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Acknowledgments xi 

Introduction 1 


1 The Brain as Hologram 1 1 

2 The Cosmos as Hologram 32 


3 The Holographic Model and Psychology 59 

4 I Sing the Body Holographic 82 

5 A Pocketful of Miracles 119 

6 Seeing Hoiographically 162 


7 Time Out of Mind 197 

8 Traveling in the Superhologram 229 

9 Return to the Dreamtime 286 

Notes 303 

Index 329 


Writing is always a collaborative effort and many people have contrib- 
uted to the production of this book in various ways. It is not possible to 
name them all, but a few who deserve special mention include: 

David Bohm, Ph.D., and Karl Pribram, Ph.D., who were generous 
with both their time and their ideas, and without whose work this book 
would not have been written. 

Barbara Brennan, M.S., Larry Dossey, M.D., Brenda Dunne, Ph.D., 
Elizabeth W. Fenske, Ph.D., Gordon Globus, Jim Gordon, Stanislav 
Graf, M.D., Francine Howland, M.D., Valerie Hunt, Ph.D., Robert Jahn, 
Ph.D., Ronald Wong Jue, Ph.D., Mary Orser, F. David Peat, Ph.D., 
Elizabeth Rauscher, Ph.D., Beatrice Rich, Peter M. Rojcewicz, Ph.D., 
Abner Shimony, Ph.D., Bernie S. Siegel, M.D., T.M. Srinivasan, M.D., 
Whitley Strieber, Russell Targ, William A. Tiller, Ph.D., Montague 
Ullman, M.D., Lyall Watson, Ph.D., Joel L. Whitton, M.D., Ph.D., Fred 
Alan Wolf, Ph.D., and Richard Zarro, who were also all generous with 
their time and ideas. 

Carol Ann Dryer, for her friendship, insight, and support, and for 
unending generosity when it comes to sharing her profound talent. 

Kenneth Ring, Ph.D., for hours of fascinating conversation and for 
introducing me to the writings of Henry Corbin. 

Stanley Krippner, Ph.D., for taking the time to call me or drop me a 
note whenever he came across any new leads on the holographic idea. 

Terry Oleson, Ph.D., for his time and for kindly allowing me to use 
his diagram of the "iittie man in the ear." 

Michael Grosso, Ph.D., for thought-provoking conversation and for 
helping me track down several obscure reference works on miracles. 

Brendan O'Regan of the Institute of Noetic Sciences, for his impor- 


tant contributions to the subject of miracles and for helping me track 
down information on the same. 

My longtime friend Peter Brunjes, Ph.D., for using his university 
connections to help me obtain several difficult-to-find reference works. 

Judith Hooper, for loaning me numerous books and articles from her 
own extensive collection of materials on the holographic idea. 

Susan Cowles, M.S., of the Museum of Holography in New York for 
helping me search out illustrations for the book. 

Kerry Brace, for sharing his thoughts on the holographic idea as it 
applies to Hindu thinking, and from whose writings I have borrowed the 
idea of using the hologram of Princess Leia from the movie Star ' Wars to 
open the book. 

Marilyn Ferguson, the founder of the Brain/Mind Bulletin, who was 
one of the first writers to recognize and write about the importance of the 
holographic theory, and who also was generous with her time and 
thought. The observant reader will notice that my summary of the view 
of the universe that arises when one considers Bohm and Pribram's 
conclusions in tandem, at the end of Chapter Two, is actually just a slight 
rephrasing of the words Ferguson uses to summarize the same sentiment 
in her bestselling book The Aquarian Conspiracy. My inability to come 
up with a different and better way to summarize the holographic idea 
should be viewed as a testament to Ferguson's clarity and succinctness as 
a writer. 

The staff at the American Society for Psychical Research for assist- 
ance in tracking down references, resources, and the names of pertinent 

Martha Visser and Sharon Schuyler for their help in researching the 

Ross Wetzsteon of the Village Voice, who asked me to write the 
article that started it all. 

Claire Zion of Simon & Schuster, who first suggested that I write a 
book on the holographic idea. 

Lucy Kroll and Barbara Hogenson for being the best agents possible. 

Lawrence P. Ashmead of HarperCollins for believing in the book, and 
John Michel for his gentle and insightful editing. 

If there is anyone that I have inadvertently left out, please forgive me. 
To all, both named and unnamed, who have helped me give birth to this 
book, my heartfelt thanks. 


In the movie Star Wars, Luke Skywalker's adventure begins when a 
beam of light shoots out of the robot Artoo Detoo and projects a 
miniature three-dimensional image of Princess Leia. Luke watches 
spellbound as the ghostly sculpture of light begs for someone named 
Obi-wan Kenobi to come to her assistance. The image is a hologram, a 
three-dimensional picture made with the aid of a laser, and the 
technological magic required to make such images is remarkable. But 
what is even more astounding is that some scientists are beginning to 
believe the universe itself is a kind of giant hologram, a splendidly 
detailed illusion no more or less real than the image of Princess Leia that 
starts Luke on his quest. 

Put another way, there is evidence to suggest that our world and 
everything in it — from snowflakes to maple trees to falling stars and 
spuming electrons — are also only ghostly images, projections from a 
level of reality so beyond our own it is literally beyond both space and 

The main architects of this astonishing idea are two of the world's 
most eminent thinkers: University of London physicist David Bohm, a 
protege of Einstein's and one of the world's most respected quantum 
physicists; and Karl Pribram, a neurophysiologist at Stanford University 
and author of the classic neuropsychological textbook Languages of the 
Brain. Intriguingly, Bohm and Pribram arrived at their conclusions 
independently and while working from two very different directions. 
Bohm became convinced of the universe's holographic nature 


only after years of dissatisfaction with standard theories* inability to 
explain all of the phenomena encountered in quantum physics. Pribram 
became convinced because of the failure of standard theories of the 
brain to explain various neurophysiological puzzles. 

However, after arriving at their views, Bohm and Pribram quickly 
realized the holographic model explained a number of other mysteries as 
weli, including the apparent inability of any theory, no matter how 
comprehensive, ever to account for all the phenomena encountered in 
nature; the ability of individuals with hearing in only one ear to deter- 
mine the direction from which a sound originates; and our ability to 
recognize the face of someone we have not seen for many years even if 
that person has changed considerably in the interim. 

But the most staggering thing about the holographic model was that it 
suddenly made sense of a wide range of phenomena so elusive they 
generally have been categorized outside the province of scientific 
understanding. These include telepathy, precognition, mystical feelings 
of oneness with the universe, and even psychokinesis, or the ability of 
the mind to move physical objects without anyone touching them. 

Indeed, it quickly became apparent to the ever growing number of 
scientists who came to embrace the holographic model that it helped 
explain virtually all paranormal and mystical experiences, and in the last 
half-dozen years or so it has continued to galvanize researchers and shed 
light on an increasing number of previously inexplicable phenomena. 
For example: 

In 1980 University of Connecticut psychologist Dr. Kenneth fling 
proposed that near-death experiences could be explained by the holo- 
graphic model. Ring, who is president of the International Association 
for Near-Death Studies, believes such experiences, as well as death 
itself, are really nothing more than the shifting of a person's con- 
sciousness from one level of the hologram of reality to another. 

i In 1985 Dr. Stanistav Grof, chief of psychiatric research at the Mary- 
land Psychiatric Research Center and an assistant professor of psychi- 
atry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, published a 
book in which he concluded that existing neurophysiological models of 
the brain are inadequate and only a holographic model can explain 
such things as archetypal experiences, encounters with the collective 
unconscious, and other unusual phenomena experienced during al- 
tered states of consciousness. 



At the 1987 annual meeting of the Association for the Study of 
Dreams held in Washington, D.C, physicist Fred Alan Wolf delivered 
a talk in which he asserted that the holographic model explains lucid 
dreams (unusually vivid dreams in which the dreamer realizes he or 
she is awake). Wolf believes such dreams are actually visits to parallel 
realities, and the holographic model will ultimately allow us to develop 
a "physics of consciousness" which will enable us to begin to explore 
more fully these other-dimensional levels of existence. 

■ In his 1987 book entitled Synckronicity: The Bridge Between Matter 
and Mind, Dr. F. David Peat, a physicist at Queen's University in 
Canada, asserted that synchronic! ties (coincidences that are so 
unusual and so psyc ho logically meaningful they don't seem to be the 
result of chance alone) can be explained by the holographic model. 
Peat believes such coincidences are actually "flaws in the fabric of 
reality." They reveal that our thought processes are much more inti- 
mately connected to the physical world than has been hitherto sus- 

These are only a few of the thought-provoking ideas that will be 
explored in this book. Many of these ideas are extremely controversial. 
Indeed, the holographic model itself is highly controversial and is by no 
means accepted by a majority of scientists. Nonetheless, and as we shall 
see, many important and impressive thinkers do support it and believe it 
may be the most accurate picture of reality we have to date. 

The holographic model has also received some dramatic experimental 
support. In the field of neurophysiology numerous studies have 
corroborated Pribram's various predictions about the holographic nature 
of memory and perception. Similarly, in 1982 a landmark experiment 
performed by a research team led by physicist Alain Aspect at the 
Institute of Theoretical and Applied Optics, in Paris, demonstrated that 
the web of subatomic particles that compose our physical universe — the 
very fabric of reality itself — possesses what appears to be an undeniable 
"holographic" properly. These findings will also be discussed in the 

In addition to the experimental evidence, several other things add 
weight to the holographic hypothesis. Perhaps the most important 
considerations are the character and achievements of the two men who 
originated the idea. Early in their careers, and before the holographic 
model was even a glimmer in their thoughts, each amassed accom- 
plishments that would inspire most researchers to spend the rest of 



their academic lives resting on their laurels. In the 1940s Pribram did 
pioneering work on the limbic system, a region of the brain involved in 
emotions and behavior. Bohm's work in plasma physics in the 1950s is 
also considered landmark. 

But even more significantly, each has distinguished himself in another 
way. It is a way even the most accomplished men and women can seldom 
call their own, for it is measured not by mere intelligence or even talent 
It is measured by courage, the tremendous resolve it takes to stand up for 
one's convictions even in the face of overwhelming opposition. While he 
was a graduate student, Bohm did doctoral work with Robert 
Oppenheimer. Later, in 1951, when Oppenheimer came under the 
perilous scrutiny of Senator Joseph McCarthy's Committee on 
Un-American Activities, Bohm was called to testify against him and 
refused. As a result he lost his job at Princeton and never again taught in 
the United States, moving first to Brazil and then to London. 

Early in his career Pribram faced a similar test of mettle. In 1935 a 
Portuguese neurologist named Egas Moniz devised what he believed 
was the perfect treatment for mental illness. He discovered that fay 
boring into an individual's skull with a surgical pick and severing the 
prefrontal cortex from the rest of the brain he could make the most 
troublesome patients docile. He called the procedure a prefrontal 
lobotomy, and by the 1940s it had become such a popular medical 
technique that Moniz was awarded the Nobel Prize. In the 1950s the 
procedure's popularity continued and it became a tool, like the McCarthy 
hearings, to stamp out cultural undesirables. So accepted was its use for 
this purpose that the surgeon Walter Freeman, the most outspoken 
advocate for the procedure in the United States, wrote unashamedly that 
lobotomies "made good American citizens" out of society's misfits, 
" schizophrenics, homosexuals, and radicals. " 

During this time Pribram came on the medical scene. However, unlike 
many of his peers, Pribram felt it was wrong to tamper so recklessly with 
the brain of another. So deep were his convictions that while working as 
a young neurosurgeon in Jacksonville, Florida, he opposed the accepted 
medical wisdom of the day and refused to allow any lobotomies to be 
performed in the ward he was overseeing. Later at Yale he maintained 
his controversial stance, and his then radical views very nearly lost him 
his job. 

Bohm and Pribram's commitment to stand up for what they believe in, 
regardless of the consequences, is also evident in the holographic model. 
As we shall see, placing their not inconsiderable reputations 

behind such a controversial idea is not the easiest path either could have 
taken. Both their courage and the vision they have demonstrated in the 
past again add weight to the holographic idea. 

One final piece of evidence in favor of the holographic model is the 
paranormal itself. Lhis is no small point, for in the last several decades a 
remarkable body of evidence has accrued suggesting that our current 
understanding of reality, the solid and comforting sticks-and-stones 
picture of the world we all learned about in high-school science class, is 
wrong. Because these findings cannot be explained by any of our 
standard scientific models, science has in the main ignored them. 
However, the volume of evidence has reached the point where this is no 
longer a tenable situation. 

To give just one example, in 1987, physicist Robert G. Jahn and 
clinical psychologist Brenda J. Dunne, both at Princeton University, 
announced that after a decade of rigorous experimentation by their 
Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory, they had ac- 
cumulated unequivocal evidence that the mind can psychically interact 
with physical reality. More specifically, Jahn and Dunne found that 
through mental concentration alone, human beings are able to affect the 
way certain kinds of machines operate. This is an astounding finding 
and one that cannot be accounted for in terms of our standard picture of 

It can be explained by the holographic view, however. Conversely, 
because paranormal events cannot be accounted for by our current 
scientific understandings, they cry out for a new way of looking at the 
universe, a new scientific paradigm. In addition to showing how the 
holographic model can account for the paranormal, the book will also 
examine how mounting evidence in favor of the paranormal in turn 
actually seems to necessitate the existence of such a model. 

The fact that the paranormal cannot be explained by our current 
scientific worldview is only one of the reasons it remains so controver- 
sial. Another is that psychic functioning is often very difficult to pin 
down in the lab, and this has caused many scientists to conclude it 
therefore does not exist. This apparent elusiveness will also be dis- 
cussed in the book. 

An even more important reason is that contrary to what many of us 
have come to believe, science is not prejudice -free. I first learned this a 
number of years ago when I asked a well-known physicist what he 
thought about a particular parapsychological experiment. The physicist 
{who had a reputation for being skeptical of the paranormal) 



looked at me and with great authority said the results revealed "no 
evidence of any psychic functioning whatsoever. " I had not yet seen the 
results, but because I respected the physicist's intelligence and 
reputation, I accepted his judgment without question. Later when I 
examined the results for myself, I was stunned to discover the experi- 
ment had produced very striking evidence of psychic ability. I realized 
then that even well-known scientists can possess biases and blind spots. 

Unfortunately this is a situation that occurs often in the investigation 
of the paranormal. In a recent article in American Psychologist, Yale 
psychologist Irvin L. Child examined how a well-known series of ESP 
dream experiments conducted at the Maimonides Medical Center in 
Brooklyn, New York, had been treated by the scientific establishment. 
Despite the dramatic evidence supportive of ESP uncovered by the 
experimenters, Child found their work had been almost completely 
ignored by the scientific community. Even more distressing, in the 
handful of scientific publications that had bothered to comment on the 
experiments, he found the research had been so "severely distorted" its 
importance was completely obscured. 1 

How is this possible? One reason is science is not always as objective as 
we would like to believe. We view scientists with a bit of awe, and when 
they tell us something we are convinced it must be true. We forget they 
are only human and subject to the same religious, philosophical, and 
cultural prejudices as the rest of us. This is unfortunate, for as this book 
will show, there is a great deal of evidence that the universe 
encompasses considerably more than our current worldview allows. 

But why is science so resistant to the paranormal in particular? This is 
a more difficult question. In commenting on the resistance he experi- 
enced to his own unorthodox views on health, Yale surgeon Dr. Bernie S. 
Siegel, author of the best-selling book Love, Medicine, and Miracles, 
asserts that it is because people are addicted to their beliefs. Siegel says 
this is why when you try to change someone's belief they act like an 

There seems to be a good deal of truth to Siegel's observation, which 
perhaps is why so many of civilization's greatest insights and advances 
have at first been greeted with such passionate denial. We are addicted 
to our beliefs and we do act like addicts when someone tries to wrest 
from us the powerful opium of our dogmas. And since West- 

ern science has devoted several centuries to not believing in the para- 
normal, it is not going to surrender its addiction lightly. 

I am lucky. I have always known there was more to the world than is 
generally accepted. I grew up in a psychic family, and from an early age 
I experienced firsthand many of the phenomena that will be talked about 
in this book. Occasionally, and when it is relevant to the topic being 
discussed, 1 will relate a few of my own experiences. Although they can 
only be viewed as anecedotal evidence, for me they have provided the 
most compelling proof of all that we live in a universe we are only just 
beginning to fathom, and I include them because of the insight they 

Lastly, because the holographic concept is still very much an idea in 
the making and is a mosaic of many different points of view and pieces 
of evidence, some have argued that it should not be called a model or 
theory until these disparate points of view are integrated into a more 
unified whole. As a result, some researchers refer to the ideas as the 
holographic paradigm. Others prefer holographic analogy, holographic 
metaphor, and so on. In this book and for the sake of diversity I have 
employed all of these expressions, including holographic model and 
holographic theory, but do not mean to imply that the holographic idea 
has achieved the status of a model or theory in the strictest sense of these 

In this same vein it is important to note that although Bohm and 
Pribram are the originators of the holographic idea, they do not embrace 
all of the views and conclusions put forward in this book. Rather, this is a 
book that looks not only at Bohm and Pribram's theories, but at the ideas 
and conclusions of numerous researchers who have been influenced by 
the holographic model and who have interpreted it in their own 
sometimes controversial ways. 

Throughout this book I also discuss various ideas from quantum 
physics, the branch of physics that studies subatomic particles (electrons, 
protons, and so on). Because I have written on this subject before, I am 
aware that some people are intimidated by the term quantum physics and 
are afraid they will not be able to understand its concepts. My 
experience has taught me that even those who do not know any 
mathematics are able to understand the kinds of ideas from physics that 
are touched upon in this book. You do not even need a background in 
science. All you need is an open mind if you happen to glance at a page 
and see a scientific term you do not know. I have kept 


such terms down to a minimum, and on those occasions when it was 
necessary to use one, I always explain it before continuing on with the 

So don't be afraid. Once you have overcome your "fear of the 
water," I think you'll find swimming among quantum physics' strange 
and fascinating ideas much easier than you thought. I think you'll also 
find that pondering a few of these ideas might even change the way 
you look at the world. In fact, it is my hope that the ideas contained 
in the following chapters will change the way you look at the world. 
It is with this humble desire that I offer this book. 



Sit down before foct like a little child, and be pre- 
pared to give up every preconceived notion, follow 
humbly wherever and to whatever abyss Nature 
leads, or you shall learn nothing. 

— T. H. Huxley 

The Brain as Hologram 

It isn't that the world of appearances is wrong; it isn't that there 
aren't objects out there, at one level of reality. It's that if you 
penetrate through and look at the universe with a holographic 
system, you arrive at a different view, a different reality. And that 
other reality can explain things that have hitherto remained 
inexplicable scientifically: paranormal phenomena, 

synchronicities, the apparently meaningful coincidence of events. 

— Karl Pribram 

in an interview in Psychology Today 

The puzzle that first started Pribram on the road to formulating his 
holographic model was the question of how and where memories are 
stored in the brain. In the early 1 940s, when he first became interested in 
this mystery, it was generally believed that memories were localized in 
the brain. Each memory a person had, such as the memory of the last 
time you saw your grandmother, or the memory of the fragrance of a 
gardenia you sniffed when you were sixteen, was believed to have a 
specific location somewhere in the brain cells. Such memory traces 
were called engrains, and although no one knew what an engram was 
made of — whether it was a neuron or perhaps even a special kind of 
molecule — most scientists were confident it was only a matter of time 
before one would be found. There were reasons for this confidence. 
Research conducted by Ca- 



The Brain as Hologram 

nadian neurosurgeon Wilder Penfield in the 1 920s had offered convinc- 
ing evidence that specific memories did have specific locations in the 
brain. One of the most unusual features of the brain is that the object 
itself doesn't sense pain directly. As long as the scalp and skull have 
been deadened with a local anesthetic, surgery can be performed on the 
brain of a fully conscious person without causing any pain. 

In a series of landmark experiments, Penfield used this fact to his 
advantage. While operating on the brains of epileptics, he would elec- 
trically stimulate various areas of their brain cells. To his amazement he 
found that when he stimulated the temporal lobes (the region of the brain 
behind the temples) of one of his fully conscious patients, they 
reexperienced memories of past episodes from their lives in vivid detail. 
One man suddenly relived a conversation he had had with friends in 
South Africa; a boy heard his mother talking on the telephone and after 
several touches from Penfield's electrode was able to repeat her entire 
conversation; a woman found herself in her kitchen and could hear her 
son playing outside. Even when Penfield tried to mislead his patients by 
telling them he was stimulating a different area when he was not, he 
found that when he touched the same spot it always evoked the same 

In his book The Mystery of the Mind, published in 1975, just shortly 
before his death, he wrote, "It was evident at once that these were not 
dreams. They were electrical activations of the sequential record of 
consciousness, a record that had been laid down during the patient's 
earlier experience. The patient 're-lived' all that he had been aware of in 
that earlier period of time as in a moving-picture 'flashback.' |M 

From his research Penfield concluded that everything we have ever 
experienced is recorded in our brain, from every stranger's face we have 
glanced at in a crowd to every spider web we gazed at as a child. He 
reasoned that this was why memories of so many insignificant events 
kept cropping up in his sampling. If our memory is a complete record of 
even the most mundane of our day-to-day experiences, it is reasonable to 
assume that dipping randomly into such a massive chronicle would 
produce a good deal of trifling information. 

As a young neurosurgery resident, Pribram had no reason to doubt 
Penfield's engram theory. But then something happened that was to 
change his thinking forever. In 1946 he went to work with the great 
neuropsychologist Karl Lashley at the Yerkes Laboratory of Primate 
Biology, then in Orange Park, Florida. For over thirty years Lashley had 
been involved in his own ongoing search for the elusive mech- 

anisms responsible for memory, and there Pribram was able to witness 
the fruits of Lashley's labors firsthand. What was startling was that not 
only had Lashley failed to produce any evidence of the en-gram, but his 
research actually seemed to pull the rug out from under all of Penfield's 

What Lashley had done was to train rats to perform a variety of tasks, 
such as run a maze. Then he surgically removed various portions of their 
brains and retested them. His aim was literally to cut out the area of the 
rats' brains containing the memory of their maze-running ability. To his 
surprise he found that no matter what portion of their brains he cut out, 
he could not eradicate their memories. Often the rats' motor skills were 
impaired and they stumbled clumsily through the mazes, but even with 
massive portions of their brains removed, their memories remained 
stubbornly intact. 

For Pribram these were incredible findings. If memories possessed 
specific locations in the brain in the same way that books possess 
specific locations on library shelves, why didn't Lashley's surgical 
plunderings have any effect on them? For Pribram the only answer 
seemed to be that memories were not localized at specific brain sites, but 
were somehow spread out or distributed throughout the brain as a whole. 
The problem was that he knew of no mechanism or process that could 
account for such a state of affairs. 

Lashley was even less certain and later wrote, 'I sometimes feel, in 
reviewing the evidence on the localization of the memory trace, that the 
necessary conclusion is that learning just is not possible at all. 
Nevertheless, in spite of such evidence against it, learning does some- 
times occur."" In 1948 Pribram was offered a position at Yale, and 
before leaving he helped write up thirty years of Lashley's monumental 

The Breakthrough 

At Yale, Pribram continued to ponder the idea that memories were 
distributed throughout the brain, and the more he thought about it the 
more convinced he became. After all, patients who had had portions of 
their brains removed for medical reasons never suffered the loss of 
specific memories. Removal of a large section of the brain might cause a 
patient's memory to become generally hazy, but no one ever came 



The Brain as Hologram 


out of surgery with any selective memory loss. Similarly, individuals 
who had received head injuries in car collisions and other accidents 
never forgot half of their family, or half of a novel they had read. Even 
removal of sections of the temporal lobes, the area of the brain that had 
figured so prominently in Penfield's research, didn't create any gaps in a 
person's memories. 

Pribram's thinking was further solidified by his and other researchers' 
inability to duplicate Penfield's findings when stimulating brains other 
than those of epileptics. Even Penfield himself was unable to duplicate 
his results in nonepileptic patients. 

Despite the growing evidence that memories were distributed, Pri- 
bram was still at a loss as to how the brain might accomplish such a 
seemingly magical feat. Then in the mid-1960s an article he read in 
Scientific American describing the first construction of a hologram hit 
him like a thunderbolt. Not only was the concept of holography dazzling, 
but it provided a solution to the puzzle with which he had been 

To understand why Pribram was so excited, it is necessary to under- 
stand a little more about holograms. One of the things that makes 
holography possible is a phenomenon known as interference. Interfer- 
ence is the crisscrossing pattern that occurs when two or more waves, 
such as waves of water, ripple through each other. For example, if you 
drop a pebble into a pond, it will produce a series of concentric waves 
that expands outward. If you drop two pebbles into a pond, you will get 
two sets of waves that expand and pass through one another. The 
complex arrangement of crests and troughs that results from such 
collisions is known as an interference pattern. 

Any wavelike phenomena can create an interference pattern, includ- 
ing light and radio waves. Because laser light is an extremely pure, 
coherent form of light, it is especially good at creating interference 
patterns. It provides, in essence, the perfect pebble and the perfect pond. 
As a result, it wasn't until the invention of the laser that holograms, as 
we know them today, became possible. 

A hologram is produced when a single laser light is split into two 
separate beams. The first beam is bounced off the object to be photo- 
graphed. Then the second beam is allowed to collide with the reflected 
tight of the first. When this happens they create an interference pattern 
which is then recorded on a piece of film (see fig, 1). 

To the naked eye the image on the film looks nothing at all like the 
object photographed. In fact, it even looks a little like the concentric 
rings that form when a handful of pebbles is tossed into a pond (see fig. 
2). But as soon as another laser beam (or in some instances just a bright 
light source) is shined through the film, a three-dimensional image of 
the original object reappears. The three-dimen3ionahty of such images 
is often eerily convincing. You can actually walk around a holographic 
projection and view it from different angles as you would a real object. 
However, if you reach out and try to touch it, your hand will waft right 
through it and you will discover there is really nothing there (see fig. 3). 

-.. IIV/H 

beam wttm* 

Figure 1 . A hologram is produced when a single laser light is split into two 
separate beaniE. Tbe first beam is bounced off the object to be photographed, in 
this case an apple. Then the second beam is allowed to collide with the reflected 
light of the first, and the resulting interference pattern is recorded on film. 



The Brain as Hologram 


Three-dimensionality is not the only remarkable aspect of holo- 
grams. If a piece of holographic film containing the image of an apple 
is cut in half and then illuminated by a laser, each half will still be 
found to contain the entire image of the apple! Even if the halves are 
divided again and then again, an entire apple can still be reconstructed 
from each small portion of the film {although the images will get 
hazier as the portions get smaller). Unlike normal photographs, every 

FIguhe2. A piece of holographic film containing an encoded image. To the naked 
eye the image on the film looks nothing like the object photographed and is 
composed of irregular ripples known as interference patterns. However, when 
the film is illuminated with another laser, a three-dimensional image of the original 
object reappears. 

Figure 3. The three-dimensionality of a hologram is often so eerily convincing 
that you can actually walk around it and view it from different angles. But if you 
reach out and try to touch it, your hand will waft right through it ["Celeste 
Undressed." Holographic stereogram by Peter Claudius, 1978. Photograph by 
Brad Cantos, collection of The Museum of Holography. Used by permission] 

small fragment of a piece of holographic film contains all the informa- 
tion recorded in the whole (see fig. 4).* 

This was precisely the feature that got Pribram so excited, for it 
offered at last a way of understanding how memories could be dis- 
tributed rather than localized in the brain. If it was possible for every 
portion of a piece of holographic film to contain all the information 
necessary to create a whole image, then it seemed equally possible for 
every part of the brain to contain all of the information necessary to 
recall a whole memory. 

"It should be noted that this astounding trait is common only to pieces of holographic film 
whose images are invisible to the naked eye. If you buy a piece of holographic film (or an 
object containing a piece of holographic film) in a store and can see a three-dimensional 
image in it without any special kind of illumination, do not cut it in half. You will only end n P 
with pieces of the original image. 



The Brain as Hologram 


Figure 4. Uniike normal photographs, every portion of a piece of holographic film 
contains all of the information of the whole. Thus if a holographic plate is broken 
into fragments, each piece can still be used to reconstruct the entire image. 

Vision Also Is Holographic 

Memory is not the only thing the brain may process holographically. 
Another of Lashley's discoveries was that the visual centers of the brain 
were also surprisingly resistant to surgical excision. Even after 
removing as much as 90 percent of a rat's visual cortex {the part of the 
brain that receives and interprets what the eye sees), he found it could 
still perform tasks requiring complex visual skills. Similarly, research 
conducted by Pribram revealed that as much as 98 percent 

of a cat's optic nerves can be severed without seriously impairing its 
ability to perform complex visual tasks. 3 

Such a situation was tantamount to believing that a movie audience 
could still enjoy a motion picture even after 90 percent of the movie 
screen was missing, and his experiments presented once again a serious 
challenge to the standard understanding of how vision works. According 
to the leading theory of the day, there was a one-to-one correspondence 
between the image the eye sees and the way that image is represented in 
the brain. In other words, when we look at a square, it was believed the 
electrical activity in our visual cortex also possesses the form of a square 
(see fig. 5). 

Although findings such as Lashley's seemed to deal a deathblow to 
this idea, Pribram was not satisfied. While he was at Yale he devised a 
series of experiments to resolve the matter and spent the next seven 
years carefully measuring the electrical activity in the brains of mon- 
keys while they performed various visual tasks. He discovered that not 
only did no such one-to-one correspondence exist, but there wasn't even 
a discernible pattern to the sequence in which the electrodes fired. He 
wrote of his findings, "These experimental results are incompatible with 
a view that a photographic-like image becomes projected onto the 
cortical surface." 4 

Figure 5. Vision theorists once believed there was a one-to-one correspondence 
between an image the eye sees and how that image is represented in the brain. 
Pribram discovered this is not true. 



The Brain as Hologram 


Once again the resistance the visual cortex displayed toward surgical 
excision suggested that, like memory, vision was also distributed, and 
after Pribram became aware of holography he began to wonder if it, too, 
was holographic. The "whole in every part" nature of a hologram 
certainly seemed to explain how so much of the visual cortex could be 
removed without affecting the ability to perform visual tasks. If the brain 
was processing images by employing some kind of internal hologram, 
even a very small piece of the hologram could still reconstruct the whole 
of what the eyes were seeing. It also explained the lack of any one-to-one 
correspondence between the external world and the brain's electrical 
activity. Again, if the brain was using holographic principles to process 
visual information, there would be no more one-to-one correspondence 
between electrical activity and images seen than there was between the 
meaningless swirl of interference patterns on a piece of holographic film 
and the image the film encoded. 

The only question that remained was what wavelike phenomenon the 
brain might be using to create such internal holograms. As soon as 
Pribram considered the question he thought of a possible answer. It was 
known that the electrical communications that take place between the 
brain's nerve cells, or neurons, do not occur alone. Neurons possess 
branches like little trees, and when an electrical message reaches the end 
of one of these branches it radiates outward as does the ripple in a pond. 
Because neurons are packed together so densely, these expanding 
ripples of electricity — also a wavelike phenomenon — are constantly 
crisscrossing one another. When Pribram remembered this he realized 
that they were most assuredly creating an almost endless and 
kaleidoscopic array of interference patterns, and these in turn might be 
what give the brain its holographic properties. "The hologram was there 
all the time in the wave-front nature of brain-cell connectivity," 
observed Pribram. "We simply hadn't had the wit to realize it," 5 

Other Puzzles Explained by the 
Holographic Brain Model 

Pribram published his first article on the possible holographic nature of 
the brain in 1966, and continued to expand and refine his ideas 

during the next several years. As he did, and as other researchers became 
aware of his theory, it was quickly realized that the distributed nature of 
memory and vision is not the only neurophysiologies! puzzle the 
holographic model can explain. 


Holography also explains how our brains can store so many memories 
in so little space. The brilliant Hungarian-born physicist and math- 
ematician John von Neumann once calculated that over the course of the 
average human lifetime, the brain stores something on the order of 2.8 X 
10 20 (280,000,000,000,000,000,000) bits of information. This is a 
staggering amount of information, and brain researchers have long 
struggled to come up with a mechanism that explains such a vast ca- 

Interestingly, holograms also possess a fantastic capacity for infor- 
mation storage. By changing the angle at which the two lasers strike a 
piece of photographic film, it is possible to record many different images 
on the same surface. Any image thus recorded can be retrieved simply 
by illuminating the film with a laser beam possessing the same angle as 
the original two beams. By employing this method researchers have 
calculated that a one-inch-square of film can store the same amount of 
information contained in fifty Bibles! 6 


Pieces of holographic film containing multiple images, such as those 
described above, also provide a way of understanding our ability to both 
recall and forget. When such a piece of film is held in a laser beam and 
tilted back and forth, the various images it contains appear and disappear 
in a glittering stream. It has been suggested that our ability to remember 
is analogous to shining a laser beam on such a piece of film and calling 
up a particular image. Similarly, when we are unable to recall something, 
this may be equivalent to shining various beams on a piece of 
multiple-image film, but failing to find the right angle to call up the 
image/memory for which we are searching. 


In Proust's Swann 's Way a sip of tea and a bite of a small 
scallop-shaped cake known as a petite madeleine cause the narrator to 



The Brain as Hologram 


himself suddenly flooded with memories from his past At first he is 
puzzled, but then, slowly, after much effort on his part, he remembers 
that his aunt used to give him tea and madeleines when he was a little 
boy, and it is this association that has stirred his memory. We have all 
had similar experiences — a whiff of a particular food being prepared, or 
a glimpse of some long-forgotten object — that suddenly evoke some 
scene out of our past 

The holographic idea offers a further analogy for the associative 
tendencies of memory. This is illustrated by yet another kind of holo- 
graphic recording technique. First, the light of a single laser beam is 
bounced off two objects simultaneously, say an easy chair and a smok- 
ing pipe. The light bounced off each object is then allowed to collide, 
and the resulting interference pattern is captured on film. Then, when- 
ever the easy chair is illuminated with laser light and the light that 
reflects off the easy chair is passed through the film, a three-dimensional 
image of the pipe will appear. Conversely, whenever the same is done 
with the pipe, a hologram of the easy chair appears. So, if our brains 
function holographically, a similar process may be responsible for the 
way certain objects evoke specific memories from our past. 

to the first, is bathed in laser light and the light is bounced off the mirror 
and onto the film after it has been developed, a bright point of light will 
appear on the film. The brighter and sharper the point of light, the 
greater the degree of similarity between the first and second objects. If 
the two objects are completely dissimilar, no point of light will appear. 
By placing a light-sensitive photocell behind the holographic film, one 
can actually use the setup as a mechanical recognition system. 7 

A similar technique known as interference holography may also 
explain how we can recognize both the familiar and unfamiliar features 
of an image such as the face of someone we have not seen for many 
years. In this technique an object is viewed through a piece of 
holographic film containing its image. When this is done, any feature of 
the object that has changed since its image was originally recorded will 
reflect light differently. An individual looking through the film is 
instantly aware of both how the object has changed and how it has 
remained the same. The technique is so sensitive that even the pressure 
of a finger on a block of granite shows up immediately, and the process 
has been found to have practical applications in the materials-testing 
industry. 8 


At first glance our ability to recognize familiar things may not seem 
so unusual, but brain researchers have long realized it is quite a complex 
ability. For example, the absolute certainty we feel when we spot a 
familiar face in a crowd of several hundred people is not just a 
subjective emotion, but appears to be caused by an extremely fast and 
reliable form of information processing in our brain. 

In a 1970 artiele in the British science magazine Nature, physicist 
Pieter van Heerden proposed that a type of holography known as 
recognition holography offers a way of understanding this ability.* In 
recognition holography a holographic image of an object is recorded in 
the usual manner, save that the laser beam is bounced off a special kind 
of mirror known as a. focusing mirror before it is allowed to strike the 
unexposed film. If a second object, similar but not identical 

"Van Heerden, a researcher at the Polaroid Research Laboratories m Cambridge, Massachu- 
setts, actually proposed his own version of a hoiogrsphic theory of memory in 1963, buthia 
work went relatively unnoticed. 


In 1972, Harvard vision researchers Daniel Pollen and Michael 
Trac-tenberg proposed that the holographic brain theory may explain 
why some people possess photographic memories {also known as 
eidetic memories). Typically, individuals with photographic memories 
will spend a few moments scanning the scene they wish to memorize. 
When they want to see the scene again, they "project" a mental image of 
it, either with their eyes closed or as they gaze at a blank wall or screen. 
In a study of one such individual, a Harvard art history professor named 
Elizabeth, Pollen and Tractenberg found that the mental images she 
projected were so real to her that when she read an image of a page from 
Goethe's Faust her eyes moved as if she were reading a real page. 

Noting that the image stored in a fragment of holographic film gets 
hazier as the fragment gets smaller, Pollen and Tractenberg suggest that 
perhaps such individuals have more vivid memories because they 
somehow have access to very targe regions of their memory holo- 



The Brain as Hologram 


grams. Conversely, perhaps most of us have memories that are much 
less vivid because our access is limited to smaller regions of the memory 
holograms. 8 


Pribram believes the holographic model also sheds light on our ability 
to transfer learned skills from one part of our body to another. As you sit 
reading this book, take a moment and trace your first name in the air with 
your left elbow. You will probably discover that this is a relatively easy 
thing to do, and yet in all likelihood it is something you have never done 
before. It may not seem a surprising ability to you, but in the classic view 
that various areas of the brain {such as the area controlling the 
movements of the elbow) are "hard-wired," or able to perform tasks only 
after repetitive learning has caused the proper neural connections to 
become established between brain cells, this is something of a puzzle. 
Pribram points out that the problem becomes much more tractable if the 
brain were to convert all of its memories, including memories of learned 
abilities such as writing, into a language of interfering wave forms. Such 
a brain would be much more flexible and could shift its stored 
information around with the same ease that a skilled pianist transposes a 
song from one musical key to another. 

This same flexibility may explain how we are able to recognize a 
familiar face regardless of the angle from which we are viewing it Again, 
once the brain has memorized a face (or any other object or scene) and 
converted it into a language of wave forms, it can, in a sense, tumble this 
interna] hologram around and examine it from any perspective it wants. 


To most of us it is obvious that our feelings of love, hunger, anger, and 
so on, are internal realities, and the sound of an orchestra playing, the 
heat of the sun, the smell of bread baking, and so on, are external 
realities. But it is not so clear how our brains enable us to distinguish 
between the two. For example, Pribram points out that when we look at a 
person, the image of the person is really on the surface of our 

retinas. Yet we do not perceive the person as being on our retinas. We 
perceive them as being in the "world-out-there." Similarly, when we 
stub our toe we experience the pain in our toe. But the pain is not really in 
our toe. It is actually a neurophysiological process taking place 
somewhere in our brain. How then is our brain abie to take the multitude 
of neurophysiological processes that manifest as our experience, all of 
which are internal, and fool us into thinking that some are internal and 
some are located beyond the confines of our gray matter? 

Creating the illusion that things are located where they are not is the 
quintessential feature of a hologram. As mentioned, if you look at a 
hologram it seems to have extension in space, but if you pass your hand 
through it you will discover there is nothing there. Despite what your 
senses tell you, no instrument will pick up the presence of any abnormal 
energy or substance where the hologram appears to be hovering. This is 
because a hologram is a virtual image, an image that appears to be where 
it is not, and possesses no more extension in space than does the 
three-dimensional image you see of yourself when you look in a mirror. 
Just as the image in the mirror is located in the silvering on the mirror's 
back surface, the actual location of a hologram is always in the 
photographic emulsion on the surface of the film recording it. 

Further evidence that the brain is able to Tool us into thinking that 
inner processes are located outside the body comes from the Nobel 
Prize-winning physiologist Georg von Bekesy. In a series of experi- 
ments conducted in the late 1 960s Bekesy placed vibrators on the knees 
of blindfolded test subjects. Then he varied the rates at which the 
instruments vibrated. By doing so he discovered that he could make his 
test subjects experience the sensation that a point source of vibration 
was jumping from one knee to the other. He found that he could even 
make his subjects feel the point source of vibration in the space between 
their knees. In short, he demonstrated that humans have the ability to 
seemingly experience sensation in spatial locations where they have 
absolutely no sense receptors. 10 

Pribram believes that Bekesy's work is compatible with the holo- 
graphic view and sheds additional light on how interfering wave 
fronts — or in Bekesy's case, interfering sources of physical vibra- 
tion — enable the brain to localize some of its experiences beyond the 
physical boundaries of the body. He feels this process might also explain 
the phantom limb phenomenon, or the sensation experienced 



The Brain as Hologram 


by some amputees that a missing arm or leg is still present. Such 
individuals often feel eerily realistic cramps, pains, and tinglings in 
these phantom appendages, but maybe what they are experiencing is the 
holographic memory of the limb that is still recorded in the interference 
patterns in their brains. 

Experimental Support for the Holographic Brain 

For Pribram the many similarities between brains and holograms were 
tantalizing, but he knew his theory didn't mean anything unless it was 
backed up by more solid evidence. One researcher who provided such 
evidence was Indiana University biologist Paul Pietsch. Intrigu-ingly, 
Pietsch began as an ardent disbeliever in Pribram's theory. He was 
especially skeptical of Pribram's claim that memories do not possess any 
specific location in the brain. 

To prove Pribram wrong, Pietsch devised a series of experiments, and 
as the test subjects of his experiments he chose salamanders. In previous 
studies he had discovered that he could remove the brain of a 
salamander without killing it, and although it remained in a stupor as 
long as its brain was missing, its behavior completely returned to 
normal as soon as its brain was restored. 

Pietsch reasoned that if a salamander's feeding behavior is not 
confined to any specific location in the brain, then it should not matter 
how its brain is positioned in its head. If it did matter, Pribram's theory 
would be disproven. He then flip-flopped the left and right hemispheres 
of a salamander's brain, but to his dismay, as soon as it recovered, the 
salamander quickly resumed normal feeding. 

He took another salamander and turned its brain upside down. When 
it recovered it, too, fed normally. Growing increasingly frustrated, he 
decided to resort to more drastic measures. In a series of over 700 
operations he sliced, flipped, shuffled, subtracted, and even minced the 
brains of his hapless subjects, but always when he replaced what was 
left of their brains, their behavior returned to normal. 11 

These findings and others turned Pietsch into a believer and attracted 
enough attention that his research became the subject of a segment on 
the television show 60 Minutes. He writes about this experience as well 
as giving detailed accounts of his experiments in his insightful book 

The Mathematical Language of the Hologram 

While the theories that enabled the development of the hologram were 
first formulated in 1 947 by Dennis Gabor (who later won a Nobel Prize 
for his efforts), in the late 1960s and early 1970s Pribram's theory 
received even more persuasive experimental support. When Gabor first 
conceived the idea of holography he wasn't thinking about lasers. His 
goal was to improve the electron microscope, then a primitive and 
imperfect device. His approach was a mathematical one, and the math- 
ematics he used was a type of calculus invented by an 
eighteenth-century Frenchman named Jean E. J. Fourier. 

Roughly speaking what Fourier developed was a mathematical way 
of converting any pattern, no matter how complex, into a language of 
simple waves. He also showed how these wave forms could be con- 
verted back into the original pattern. In other words, just as a television 
camera converts an image into electromagnetic frequencies and a 
television set converts those frequencies back into the original image, 
Fourier showed how a similar process could be achieved math- 
ematically. The equations he developed to convert images into wave 
forms and back again are known as Fourier transforms. 

Fourier transforms enabled Gabor to convert a picture of an object 
into the blur of interference patterns on a piece of holographic film. 
They also enabled him to devise a way of converting those interference 
patterns back into an image of the original object. In fact the special 
whole in every part of a hologram is one of the by-products that occurs 
when an image or pattern is translated into the Fourier language of wave 

Throughout the late 1 960s and early 1 970s various researchers con- 
tacted Pribram and told him they had uncovered evidence that the visual 
system worked as a kind of frequency analyzer. Since frequency is a 
measure of the number of oscillations a wave undergoes per second, this 
strongly suggested that the brain might be functioning as a hologram 

But it wasn't until 1979 that Berkeley neurophysiologists Russell and 
Karen DeValois made the discovery that settled the matter. Research in 
the 1 960s had shown that each brain cell in the visual cortex is geared to 
respond to a different pattern — some brain cells fire when the eyes see a 
horizontal line, others fire when the eyes see a vertical line, and so on. 
As a result, many researchers concluded that the brain takes input from 
these highly specialized cells called feature detec- 



The Brain as Hologram 

tors, and somehow fits them together to provide us with our visual 
perceptions of the world. 

Despite the popularity of this view, the DeValoises felt it was only a 
partial truth. To test their assumption they used Fourier's equations to 
convert plaid and checkerboard patterns into simple wave forms. Then 
they tested to see how the brain cells in the visual cortex responded to 
these new wave-form images. What they found was that the brain cells 
responded not to the original patterns, but to the Fourier translations of 
the patterns. Only one conclusion could be drawn. The brain was using 
Fourier mathematics — the same mathematics holography employed — to 
convert visual images into the Fourier language of wave forms. 12 

The DeValoises' discovery was subsequently confirmed by numerous 
other laboratories around the world, and although it did not provide 
absolute proof the brain was a hologram, it supplied enough evidence to 
convince Pribram his theory was correct. Spurred on by the idea that the 
visual cortex was responding not to patterns but to the frequencies of 
various wave forms, he began to reassess the role frequency played in 
the other senses. 

It didn't take long for him to realize that the importance of this role had 
perhaps been overlooked by twentieth-century scientists. Over a century 
before the DeValoises' discovery, the German physiologist and physicist 
Hermann von Helmholtz had shown that the ear was a frequency 
analyzer. More recent research revealed that our sense of smell seems to 
be based on what are called osmic frequencies. Bekesy's work had 
clearly demonstrated that our skin is sensitive to frequencies of vibration, 
and he even produced some evidence that taste may involve frequency 
analysis. Interestingly, Bekesy also discovered that the mathematical 
equations that enabled him to predict how his subjects would respond to 
various frequencies of vibration were also of the Fourier genre. 

The Dancer as Wave Form 

But perhaps the most startling finding Pribram uncovered was Russian 
scientist Nikolai Bernstein's discovery that even our physical 
movements may be encoded in our brains in a language of Fourier wave 
forms. In the 1930s Bernstein dressed people in black leotards 

Figure 6. Russian researcher Nikolai Bernstein painted white dots on dancers and 
filmed them dancing against a black background. When he converted their move- 
ments into a language of wave forms, he discovered they could be analyzed using 
Fourier mathematics, the same mathematics Gabor used to invent the hologram. 

and painted white dots on their elbows, knees, and other joints. Then he 
placed them against black backgrounds and took movies of them doing 
various physical activities such as dancing, walking, jumping, 
hammering, and typing. 

When he developed the film, only the white dots appeared, moving up 
and down and across the screen in various complex and flowing 
movements (see fig. 6). To quantify his findings he Fourier-analyzed the 
various lines the dots traced out and converted them into a language of 
wave forms. To his surprise, he discovered the wave forms contained 
hidden patterns that allowed him to predict his subjects' next movement 
to within a fraction of an inch. 

When Pribram encountered Bernstein's work he immediately recog- 
nized its implications. Maybe the reason hidden patterns surfaced after 
Bernstein Fourier-analyzed his subject's movements was because that 
was how movements are stored in the brain. This was an exciting 
possibility, for if the brain analyzed movements by breaking them down 
into their frequency components, it explained the rapidity with which we 
learn many complex physical tasks. For instance, we do not learn to ride 
a bicycle by painstakingly memorizing every tiny feature of the process. 
We learn fay grasping the whole flowing movement. The fluid 
wholeness that typifies how we learn so many physical 



The Brain as Hologram 


activities is difficult to explain if our brains are storing information in a 
bit-by -bit manner. But it becomes much easier to understand if the brain 
is Fourier-analyzing such tasks and absorbing them as a whole. 

The Reaction of the Scientific Community 

Despite such evidence, Pribram's holographic model remains extremely 
controversial. Part of the problem is that there are many popular theories 
of how the brain works and there is evidence to support them all. Some 
researchers believe the distributed nature of memory can be explained 
by the ebb and flow of various brain chemicals. Others hold that 
electrical fluctuations among large groups of neurons can account for 
memory and learning. Each school of thought has its ardent supporters, 
and it is probably safe to say that most scientists remain unpersuaded by 
Pribram's arguments. For example, neuropsychologist Frank Wood of 
the Bowman Gray School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North 
Carolina, feels that "there are precious few experimental findings for 
which holography is the necessary, or even preferable, explanation." 13 
Pribram is puzzled by statements such as Wood's and counters by noting 
that he currently has a book in press with well over 500 references to 
such data. 

Other researchers agree with Pribram. Dr. Larry Dossey, former chief 
of staff at Medical City Dallas Hospital, admits that Pribram's theory 
challenges many long-held assumptions about the brain, but points out 
that "many specialists in brain function are attracted to the idea, if for no 
other reason than the glaring inadequacies of the present orthodox 

ii 14 


Neurologist Richard Restak, author of the PBS series The Brain, 
shares Dossey's opinion. He notes that in spite of overwhelming evi- 
dence that human abilities are holistically dispersed throughout the 
brain, most researchers continue to cling to the idea that function can be 
located in the brain in the same way that cities can be located on a map. 
Restak believes that theories based on this premise are not only 
"oversimplistie," but actually function as "conceptual straitjackets" that 
keep us from recognizing the brain's true complexities. 16 He feels that "a 
hologram is not only possible but, at this moment, represents probably 
our best 'model' for brain functioning." 

Pribram Encounters Bohm 

As for Pribram, by the 1970s enough evidence had accumulated to 
convince him his theory was correct. In addition, he had taken his ideas 
into the laboratory and discovered that single neurons in the motor 
cortex respond selectively to a limited bandwidth of frequencies, a 
finding that further supported his conclusions. The question that began 
to bother him was, If the picture of reality in our brains is not a picture at 
all but a hologram, what is it a hologram of? The dilemma posed by this 
question is analogous to taking a Polaroid picture of a group of people 
sitting around a table and, after the picture develops, finding that, 
instead of people, there are only blurry clouds of interference patterns 
positioned around the table. In both cases one could rightfully ask, 
Which is the true reality, the seemingly objective world experienced by 
the observer/photographer or the blur of interference patterns recorded 
by the camera/brain? 

Pribram realized that if the holographic brain model was taken to its 
logical conclusions, it opened the door on the possibility that objective 
reality — the world of coffee cups, mountain vistas, elm trees, and table 
lamps — might not even exist, or at least not exist in the way we believe 
it exists. Was it possible, he wondered, that what the mystics had been 
saying for centuries was true, reality was maya, an illusion, and what 
was out there was really a vast, resonating symphony of wave forms, a 
"frequency domain" that was transformed into the world as we know it 
only after it entered our senses? 

Realizing that the solution he was seeking might lie outside the 
province of his own field, he went to his physicist son for advice. His 
son recommended he look into the work of a physicist named David 
Bohm. When Pribram did he was electrified. He not only found the 
answer to his question, but also discovered that according to Bohm, the 
entire universe was a hologram. 

The Cosmos as Hologram 


The Cosmos as Hologram 

One con't help but be astonished at the degree to which [Bohm] has 
been able to break out of the tight molds of scientific conditioning and 
stand alone with a completely new and literally vast idea, one which has 
both internal consistency and the logical power to explain widely 
diverging phenomena of physical experience from an entirely 
unexpected point of view. ... It is a theory which is so intuitively 
satisfying that many people have felt that if the universe is not the way 
Bohm describes it, it ought to be. 

— John P. Briggs and F. David Peat 
Looking Gloss Universe 

The path that led Bohm to the conviction that the universe is structured 
like a hologram began at the very edge of matter, in the world of 
subatomic particles. His interest in science and the way things work 
blossomed early. As a young boy growing up in Wilkes-Barre, Penn- 
sylvania, he invented a dripless tea kettle, and his father, a successful 
businessman, urged him to try to turn a profit on the idea. But after 
learning that the first step in such a venture was to conduct a 
door-to-door survey to test-market his invention, Bohm's interest in 
business waned. 1 

His interest in science did not, however, and his prodigious curiosity 
forced him to look for new heights to conquer. He found the most 
challenging height of all in the 1930s when he attended Pennsylvania 

State College, for it was there that he first became fascinated by 
quantum physics. 

It is an easy fascination to understand. The strange new land that 
physicists had found lurking in the heart of the atom contained things 
more wondrous than anything Cortes or Marco Polo ever encountered. 
What made this new world so intriguing was that everything about it 
appeared to be so contrary to common sense. It seemed more like a land 
ruled by sorcery than an extension of the natural world, an 
Alice-in- Wonderland realm in which mystifying forces were the norm 
and everything logical had been turned on its ear. 

One startling discovery made by quantum physicists was that if you 
break matter into smaller and smaller pieces you eventually reach a point 
where those pieces — electrons, protons, and so on — no longer possess 
the traits of objects. For example, most of us tend to think of an electron 
as a tiny sphere or a EB whizzing around, but nothing could be further 
from the truth. Although an electron can sometimes behave as if it were a 
compact little partiele, physicists have found that it literally possesses no 
dimension. This is difficult for most of us to imagine because everything 
at our own level of existence possesses dimension. And yet if you try to 
measure the width of an electron, you will discover it's an impossible 
task. An electron is simply not an object as we know it. 

Another discovery physicists made is that an electron can manifest as 
either a particle or a wave. If you shoot an electron at the screen of a 
television that's been turned off, a tiny point of light will appear when it 
strikes the phosphorescent chemicals that coat the glass. The single point 
of impact the electron leaves on the screen clearly reveals the 
particlelike side of its nature. 

But this is not the only form the electron can assume. It can also 
dissolve into a blurry cloud of energy and behave as if it were a wave 
spread out over space. When an electron manifests as a wave it can do 
things no particle can. If it is fired at a barrier in which two slits have 
been cut, it can go through both slits simultaneously. When wavelike 
electrons collide with each other they even create interference patterns. 
The electron, like some shapeshifterout of folklore, can manifest as 
either a particle or a wave. 

This chameleonlike ability is common to all subatomic particles. It is 
also common to all things once thought to manifest exclusively as waves. 
Light, gamma rays, radio waves, X rays — all can change from waves to 
particles and back again. Today physicists believe that sub- 




The Cosmos as Hologram 


atomic phenomena should not be classified solely as either waves or 
particles, but as a single category of somethings that are always 
somehow both. These somethings are called quanta, and physicists 
believe they are the basic stuff from which the entire universe is made.* 

Perhaps most astonishing of all is that there is compelling evidence 
that the only time quanta ever manifest as particles is when we are 
looking at them. For instance, when an electron isn't being looked at, 
experimental findings suggest that it is always a wave. Physicists are 
able to draw this conclusion because they have devised clever strategies 
for deducing how an electron behaves when it is not being observed (it 
should be noted that this is only one interpretation of the evidence and is 
not the conclusion of all physicists; as we will see, Bohm himself has a 
different interpretation). 

Once again this seems more like magic than the kind of behavior we 
are accustomed to expect from the natural world. Imagine owning a 
bowling ball that was only a bowling ball when you looked at it. If you 
sprinkled talcum powder all over a bowling lane and rolled such a 
"quantum" bowling ball toward the pins, it would trace a single line 
through the talcum powder while you were watching it. But if you 
blinked while it was in transit, you would find that for the second or two 
you were not looking at it the bowling bail stopped tracing a line and 
instead left a broad wavy strip, like the undulating swath of a desert 
snake as it moves sideways over the sand (see fig. 7), 

Such a situation is comparable to the one quantum physicists en- 
countered when they first uncovered evidence that quanta coalesce into 
particles only when they are being observed. Physicist Nick Herbert, a 
supporter of this interpretation, says this has sometimes caused him to 
imagine that behind his back the world is always "a radically ambiguous 
and ceaselessly flowing quantum soup." But whenever he turns around 
and tries to see the soup, his glance instantly freezes it and turns it back 
into ordinary reality. He believes this makes us all a little like Midas, the 
legendary king who never knew the feel of silk or the caress of a human 
hand because everything he touched turned to gold. "Likewise humans 
can never experience the true texture of quantum reality," says Herbert, 
"because everything we touch turns to matter."" 

A Quanta, is the plum! of quantum. One electron is a quantum. Several electrons aft a group 
of quanta. The word quantum is also synonymous with wave particle, a term that is also 
used to refer to something that possesses both particle and wave aspects. 

Bohm and Interconnectedness 

An aspect of quantum reality that Bohm found especially interesting w as 
the strange state of interconnectedness that seemed to exist between 
apparently unrelated subatomic events. What was equally perplexing 
was that most physicists tended to attach little importance to the 
phenomenon. In fact, so little was made of it that one of the most famous 
examples of interconnectedness lay hidden in one of quantum physics's 
basic assumptions for a number of years before anyone noticed it was 

That assumption was made by one of the founding fathers of quantum 
physics, the Danish physicist Niels Bohr. Bohr pointed out that if 
subatomic particles only come into existence in the presence of an 
observer, then it is also meaningless to speak of a particle's properties 
and characteristics as existing before they are observed. This was 
disturbing to many physicists, for much of science was based on dis- 
covering the properties of phenomena. But if the act of observation 
actually helped create such properties, what did that imply about the 
future of science? 

One physicist who was troubled by Bohr's assertions was Einstein. 
Despite the role Einstein had played in the founding of quantum theory, 
he was not at all happy with the course the fledgling science 

Figure 7. Physicists have found compelling evidence that the only time electrons 
and other "quanta" manifest as particles is when we are looking at them. At all 
other times they behave as waves. This is as strange as owning a bowling ball that 
traces a single line down the lane while you are watching it, but leaves a wave 
pattern every time you blink your eyes. 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


had taken. He found Bohr's conclusion that a particle's properties don't 
exist until they are observed particularly objectionable because, when 
combined with another of quantum physics' s findings, it implied that 
subatomic particles were interconnected in a way Einstein simply didn't 
believe was possible. 

That finding was the discovery that some subatomic processes result in 
the creation of a pair of particles with identical or closely related 
properties. Consider an extremely unstable atom physicists call 
positronium. The positronium atom is composed of an electron and a 
positron {a positron is an electron with a positive charge). Because a 
positron is the electron's antiparticle opposite, the two eventually 
annihilate each other and decay into two quanta of light or "photons" 
traveling in opposite directions (the capacity to shapeshift from one kind 
of particle to another is just another of a quantum's abilities). According 
to quantum physics no matter how far apart the photons travel, when they 
are measured they will always be found to have identical angles of 
-polarization. (Polarization is the spatial orientation of the photon's 
wavelike aspect as it travels away from its point of origin.) 

In 1935 Einstein and his colleagues Boris Podolsky and Nathan Rosen 
published a now famous paper entitled "Can Quantum-Mechanical 
Description of Physical Reality Be Considered Complete?" In it they 
explained why the existence of such twin particles proved that Bohr 
could not possibly be correct. As they pointed out, two such particles, say, 
the photons emitted when positronium decays, could be produced and 
allowed to travel a significant distance apart* Then they could be 
intercepted and their angles of polarization measured. If the polarizations 
are measured at precisely the same moment and are found to be identical, 
as quantum physics predicts, and if Bohr was correct and properties such 
as polarization do not coalesce into existence until they are observed or 
measured, this suggests that somehow the two photons must be 
instantaneously communicating with each other so they know which 
angle of polarization to agree upon. The problem is that according to 
Einstein's special theory of relativity, nothing can travel faster than the 
speed of light, let alone travel instantaneously, for that would be 
tantamount to breaking the time 

•Positrtpnintn decay is not the subatomic process Einstein and his colleagues employed in 
their thought experiment, but » used here because it is easy to visualize. 

barrier and would open the door on all kinds of unacceptable paradoxes. 
Einstein and his colleagues were convinced that no "reasonable 
definition" of reality would permit such faster-than-light interconnec- 
tions to exist, and therefore Bohr had to be wrong. 3 Their argument is 
now known as the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox, or EPR paradox 
for short. 

Bohr remained unperturbed by Einstein's argument. Rather than 
believing that some kind of faster-than-light communication was taking 
place, he offered another explanation. If subatomic particles do not exist 
until they are observed, then one could no longer think of them as 
independent "things. " Thus Einstein was basing his argument on an error 
when he viewed twin particles as separate. They were part of an 
indivisible system, and it was meaningless to think of them otherwise. 

In time most physicists sided with Bohr and became content that his 
interpretation was correct. One factor that contributed to Bohr's triumph 
was that quantum physics had proved so spectacularly successful in 
predicting phenomena, few physicists were willing even to consider the 
possibility that it might be faulty in some way. In addition, when 
Einstein and his colleagues first made their proposal about twin particles, 
technical and other reasons prevented such an experiment from actually 
being performed. This made it even easier to put out of mind. This was 
curious, for although Bohr had designed his argument to counter 
Einstein's attack on quantum theory, as we will see, Bohr's view that 
subatomic systems are indivisible has equally profound implications for 
the nature of reality. Ironically, these implications were also ignored, 
and once again the potential importance of interconnect-edness was 
swept under the carpet. 

A Living Sea of Electrons 

During his early years as a physicist Bohm also accepted Bohr's position, 
but he remained puzzled by the lack of interest Bohr and his followers 
displayed toward interconnectedness. After graduating from 
Pennsylvania State College, he attended the University of California at 
Berkeley, and before receiving his doctorate there in 1943, he worked at 
the Lawrence Berkeley Radiation Laboratory. There he 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


encountered another striking example of quantum interconnectedness. 

At the Berkeley Radiation Laboratory Bohm began what was to 
become his landmark work on plasmas. A plasma is a gas containing a 
high density of electrons and positive ions, atoms that have a positive 
charge. To his amazement he found that once they were in a plasma, 
electrons stopped behaving like individuals and started behaving as if 
they were part of a larger and interconnected whole. Although their 
individual movements appeared random, vast numbers of electrons were 
able to produce effects that were surprisingly well-organized. Like some 
amoeboid creature, the plasma constantly regenerated itself and 
enclosed all impurities in a wall in the same way that a biological 
organism might encase a foreign substance in a cyst." So struck was 
Bohm by these organic qualities that be later remarked he'd frequently 
had the impression the electron sea was "alive." 3 

In 1 947 Bohm accepted an assistant professorship at Princeton Uni- 
versity, an indication of how highly he was regarded, and there he 
extended his Berkeley research to the study of electrons in metals. Once 
again he found that the seemingly haphazard movements of individual 
electrons managed to produce highly organized overall effects. Like the 
plasmas he had studied at Berkeley, these were no longer situations 
involving two particles, each behaving as if it knew what the other was 
doing, but entire oceans of particles, each behaving as if it knew what 
untold trillions of others were doing. Bohm called such collective 
movements of electrons plasmons, and their discovery established his 
reputation as a physicist. 

they were both at Princeton they should meet and discuss the book. In 
the first of what was to turn into a six-month series of spirited 
conversations, Einstein enthusiastically told Bohm that he had never 
seen quantum theory presented so clearly. Nonetheless, he admitted he 
was still every bit as dissatisfied with the theory as was Bohm. During 
their conversations the two men discovered they each had nothing but 
admiration for the theory's ability to predict phenomena. What bothered 
them was that it provided no real way of conceiving of the basic 
structure of the world. Bohr and his followers also claimed that quantum 
theory was complete and it was not possible to arrive at any clearer 
understanding of what was going on in the quantum realm. This was the 
same as saying there was no deeper reality beyond the subatomic 
landscape, no further answers to be found, and this, too, grated on both 
Bohm and Einstein's philosophical sensibilities. Over the course of their 
meetings they discussed many other tilings, but these points in 
particular gained new prominence in Bohm's thoughts. Inspired by his 
interactions with Einstein, he accepted the validity of his misgivings 
about quantum physics and decided there .had to be an alternative view. 
When his textbook Quantum Theory was published in 1951 it was 
hailed as a classic, but it was a classic about a subject to which Bohm no 
longer gave his full allegiance. His mind, ever active and always looking 
for deeper explanations, was already searching for a better way of 
describing reality. 

Bohm's Disillusionment 

Both his sense of the importance of interconnectedness as well as his 
growing dissatisfaction with several of the other prevailing views in 
physics caused Bohm to become increasingly troubled by Bohr's in- 
terpretation of quantum theory. After three years of teaching the subject 
at Princeton he decided to improve his understanding by writing a 
textbook. When he finished he found he still wasn't comfortable with 
what quantum physics was saying and sent copies of the book to both 
Bohr and Einstein to ask for their opinions. He got no answer from Bohr, 
but Einstein contacted him and said that since 

A New Kind of Field and the 
Bullet That Killed Lincoln 

After his talks with Einstein, Bohm tried to find a workable alternative 
to Bohr's interpretation. He began by assuming that particles such as 
electrons do exist in the absence of observers. He also assumed that 
there was a deeper reality beneath Bohr's inviolable wall, a 
subquan-turn level that still awaited discovery by science. Building on 
these premises he discovered that simply by proposing the existence of a 
new kind of field on this subquantum level he was able to explain the 
findings of quantum physics as well as Bohr could. Bohm called his 
proposed new field the quantum potential and theorized that, like 
gravity, it pervaded all of space. However, unlike gravitational fields, 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


magnetic fields, and so on, its influence did not diminish with distance. 
Its effects were subtle, but it was equally powerful everywhere. Bohm 
published his alternative interpretation of quantum theory in 1952. 

Reaction to his new approach was mainly negative. Some physicists 
were so convinced such alternatives were impossible that they dismissed 
his ideas out of hand. Others launched passionate attacks against his 
reasoning. In the end virtually all such arguments were based primarily 
on philosophical differences, but it did not matter. Bohr's point of view 
had become so entrenched in physics that Bohm's alternative was looked 
upon as little more than heresy. 

Despite the harshness of these attacks Bohm remained unswerving in 
his conviction that there was more to reality than Bohr's view allowed. 
He also felt that science was much too limited in its outlook when it 
came to assessing new ideas such as his own, and b a 1 957 book entitled 
Causality and Chance in Modern Physics, he examined several of the 
philosophical suppositions responsible for this attitude. One was the 
widely held assumption that it was possible for any single theory, such as 
quantum theory, to be complete. Bohm criticized this assumption by 
pointing out that nature may be infinite. Because it would not be possible 
for any theory to completely explain something that is infinite, Bohm 
suggested that open scientific inquiry might be better served if 
researchers refrained from making this assumption. 

In the book he argued that the way science viewed causality was also 
much too limited. Most effects were thought of as having only one or 
several causes. However, Bohm felt that an effect could have an infinite 
number of causes. For example, if you asked someone what caused 
Abraham Lincoln's death, they might answer that it was the bullet in 
John Wilkes Booth's gun. But a complete list of all the causes that 
contributed to Lincoln's death would have to include all of the events 
that led to the development of the gun, all of the factors that caused 
Booth to want to kill Lincoln, all of the steps in the evolution of the 
human race that allowed for the development of a hand capable of 
holding a gun, and so on, and so on. Bohm conceded that most of the 
time one could ignore the vast cascade of causes that had led to any 
given effect, but he still felt it was important for scientists to remember 
that no single cause-and-effect relationship was ever really separate from 
the universe as a whole. 

If You Want to Know Where You Are, Ask 
the Nonlocals 

During this same period of his life Bohm also continued to refine his 
alternative approach to quantum physics. As he looked more carefully 
into the meaning of the quantum potential he discovered it had a number 
of features that implied an even more radical departure from orthodox 
thinking. One was the importance of wholeness. Classical science had 
always viewed the state of a system as a whole as merely the result of 
the interaction of its parts. However, the quantum potential stood this 
view on its ear and indicated that the behavior of the parts was actually 
organized by the whole. This not only took Bohr's assertion that 
subatomic particles are not independent "things," but are part of an 
indivisible system one step further, but even suggested that wholeness 
was in some ways the more primary reality. 

It also explained how electrons in plasmas (and other specialized 
states such as superconductivity) could behave like interconnected 
wholes. As Bohm states, such "electrons are not scattered because, 
through the action of the quantum potential, the whole system is 
undergoing a co-ordinated movement more like a ballet dance than like a 
crowd of unorganized people." Once again he notes that "such quantum 
wholeness of activity is closer to the organized unity of functioning of 
the parts of a living being than it is to the kind of unity that is obtained 
by putting together the parts of a machine." 8 

An even more surprising feature of the quantum potential was its 
implications for the nature of location. At the level of our everyday lives 
things have very specific locations, but Bohm's interpretation of 
quantum physics indicated that at the subquantum level, the level in 
which the quantum potential operated, location ceased to exist. All 
points in space became equal to all other points in space, and it was 
meaningless to speak of anything as being separate from anything else. 
Physicists call this properly "n on locality." 

The nonlocal aspect of the quantum potential enabled Bohm to ex- 
plain the connection between twin particles without violating special 
relativity's ban against anything traveling faster than the speed of light. 
To illustrate how, he offers the following analogy: Imagine a fish 
swimming in an aquarium. Imagine also that you have never seen a fish 
or an aquarium before and your only knowledge about them comes from 
two television cameras, one directed at the aquarium's 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


front and the other at its side. When you look at the two television 
monitors you might mistakenly assume that the fish on the screens are 
separate entities. After all, because the cameras are set at different 
angles, each of the images will be slightly different. But as you continue 
to watch you will eventually realize there is a relationship between the 
two fish. When one turns, the other makes a slightly different but 
corresponding turn. When one faces the front, the other faces the side, 
and so on. If you are unaware of tile full scope of the situation, you 
might wrongly conclude that the fish are instantaneously 
communicating with one another, but this is not the case. No communi- 
cation is taking place because at a deeper level of reality, the reality of 
the aquarium, the two fish are actually one and the same. This, says 
Bohm, is precisely what is going on between particles such as the two 
photons emitted when a positronium atom decays (see fig. 8). Indeed, 
because the quantum potential permeates all of space, all 

Figure 8. Bohm believes subatomic particles are connected in the same way as 
the images of the fish on the two television monitors. Although particles such as 
electrons appear to be separate from one another, on a deeper level of reality — a 
level analogous to the aquarium — they are actually just different aspects of a 
deeper cosmic unity. 

particles are nonlocally interconnected. More and more the picture of 
reality Bohm was developing was not one in which subatomic particles 
were separate from one another and moving through the void of space, 
but one in which all things were part of an unbroken web and embedded 
in a space that was as real and rich with process as the matter that moved 
through it. 

Bohm's ideas still left most physicists unpersuaded, but did stir the 
interest of a few. One of these was John Stewart Bell, a theoretical 
physicist at CERN, a center for peaceful atomic research near Geneva, 
Switzerland. Like Bohm, Bell had also become discontented with quan- 
tum theory and felt there must be some alternative. As he later said, 
"Then in 1952 I saw Bohm's paper. His idea was to complete quantum 
mechanics by saying there are certain variables in addition to those 
which everybody knew about. That impressed me very much." 1 

Bell also realized that Bohm's theory implied the existence of 
nonlo-catity and wondered if there was any way of experimentally 
verifying its existence. The question remained in the back of his mind 
for years until a sabbatical in 1 964 provided him with the freedom to 
focus his full attention on the matter. Then he quickly came up with an 
elegant mathematical proof that revealed how such an experiment could 
be performed. The only problem was that it required a level of 
technological precision that was not yet available. To be certain that 
particles, such as those in the EPR paradox, were not using some normal 
means of communication, the basic operations of the experiment had to 
be performed in such an in finite simally brief instant that there wouldn't 
even be enough time for a ray of light to cross the distance separating the 
two particles. This meant that the instruments used in the experiment 
had to perform all of the necessary operations within a few 
thousand-millionths of a second. 

Enter the Hologram 

By the late 1950s Bohm had already had his run-in with MeCarthyism 
and had become a research fellow at Bristol University, England. There, 
along with a young research student named Yakir Aharonov, he 
discovered another important example of nonlocal interconnected-ness. 
Bohm and Aharonov found that under the right circumstances an 
electron is able to "feel" the presence of a magnetic field that is in 


The Cosmos as Hologram 


a region where there is zero probability of finding the electron. This 
phenomenon is now known as the Aharonov-Bohm effect, and when the 
two men first published their discovery, many physicists did not believe 
such an effect was possible. Even today there is enough residual 
skepticism that, despite confirmation of the effect in numerous 
experiments, occasionally papers still appear arguing that it doesn't 

As always, Bohm stoically accepted his continuing role as the voice in 
the crowd that bravely notes the emperor has no clothes. In an interview 
conducted some years later he offered a simple summation of the 
philosophy underlying his courage: "In the long run it is far more 
dangerous to adhere to illusion than to face what the actual fact is." 8 

Nevertheless, the limited response to his ideas about wholeness and 
nonlocality and his own inability to see how to proceed further caused 
him to focus his attention in other directions. In the 1 960s this led him to 
take a closer look at order. Classical science generally divides things 
into two categories: those that possess order in the arrangement of their 
parts and those whose parts are disordered, or random, in arrangement. 
Snowfiakes, computers, and living things are all ordered. The pattern a 
handful of spilled coffee beans makes on the floor, the debris left by an 
explosion, and a series of numbers generated by a roulette wheel are all 

As Eohm delved more deeply into the matter he realized there were 
also different degrees of order. Some things were much more ordered 
than other things, and this implied that there was, perhaps, no end to the 
hierarchies of order that existed in the universe. From this it occurred to 
Eohm that maybe things that we perceive as disordered aren't disordered 
at all. Perhaps their order is of such an "indefinitely high degree" that 
they only appear to us as random (interestingly, mathematicians are 
unable to prove randomness, and although some sequences of numbers 
are categorized as random, these are only educated guesses). 

While immersed in these thoughts, Bohm saw a device on a BBC 
television program that helped him develop his ideas even further. The 
device was a specially designed jar containing a large rotating cylinder. 
The narrow space between the cylinder and the jar was filled with 
glycerine — a thick, clear liquid — and floating motionlessly in the glyce- 
rine was a drop of ink. What interested Bohm was that when the handle 
on the cylinder was turned, the drop of ink spread out through 

the syrupy glycerine and seemed to disappear. But as soon as the handle 
was turned back in the opposite direction, the faint tracing of ink slowiy 
collapsed upon itself and once again formed a droplet (see 
fig. 9)-Bohm writes, "This immediately struck me as very relevant to the 
question of order, since, when the ink drop was spread out, it still had 
a 'hidden' {i.e., nonmanifest) order that was revealed when it was 
reconstituted. On the other hand, in our usual language, we would say 
that the ink was in a state of 'disorder* when it was diffused through 
the glycerine. This led me to see that new notions of order must be 
involved here." 9 

Fic-ure9, When a drop of ink is placed in ajar full of glycerine and a cylinder 
inside the jar is turned, the drop appears to spread out and disappear. But when 
the cylinder is turned in the opposite direction, the drop comes back together. 
Eohm uses this phenomenon as an example of how order can be either manifest 
(explicit) or hidden (implicit). 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


This discovery excited Bohm greatly, for it provided him with a new 
way of looking at many of the problems he had been contemplating. 
Soon after coming across the ink-in-g]ycerine device he encountered an 
even better metaphor for understanding order, one that enabled him not 
only to bring together all the various strands of his years of thinking, but 
did so with such force and explanatory power it seemed almost 
tailor-made for the purpose. That metaphor was the hologram. 

As soon as Bohm began to reflect on the hologram he saw that it too 
provided a new way of understanding order. Lake the ink drop in its 
dispersed state, the bterference patterns recorded on a piece of 
holographic film also appear disordered to the naked eye. Both possess 
orders that are hidden or enfolded in much the same way that the order in 
a plasma is enfolded in the seemingly random behavior of each of its 
electrons. But this was not the only insight the hologram provided. 

The more Bohm thought about it the more convinced he became that 
the universe actually employed holographic principles in its operations, 
was itself a kind of giant, flowing hologram, and this realization allowed 
him to crystallize all of his various insights into a sweeping and 
cohesive whole. He published his first papers on his holographic view of 
the universe in the early 1970s, and in 1980 he presented a mature 
distillation of his thoughts in a book entitled Wholeness and the 
Implicate Order. In it he did more than just link his myriad ideas 
together. He transfigured them into a new way of looking at reality that 
was as breathtaking as it was radical. 

Enfolded Orders and Unfolded Realities 

One of Bohm's most startling assertions is that the tangible reality of our 
everyday lives is really a kind of illusion, like a holographic image. 
Underlying it is a deeper order of existence, a vast and more primary 
level of reality that gives birth to all the objects and appearances of our 
physical world in much the same way that a piece of holographic film 
gives birth to a hologram. Bohm calls this deeper level of reality the 
implicate (which means "enfolded") order, and he refers to our own 
level of existence as the explicate, or unfolded, order. He uses these 
terms because he sees the manifestation of all forms 

in the universe as the result of countless enfoldings and unfoldings 
between these two orders. For example, Bohm believes an electron is 
not one thing but a totality or ensemble enfolded throughout the whole 
of space. When an instrument detects the presence of a single electron it 
is simply because one aspect of the electron's ensemble has unfolded, 
similar to the way an ink drop unfolds out of the glycerine, at that 
particular location. When an electron appears to be moving it is due to a 
continuous series of such unfoldments and enfoldments. 

Put another way, electrons and all other particles are no more sub- 
stantive or permanent than the form a geyser of water takes as it gushes 
out of a fountain. They are sustained by a constant influx from the 
implicate order, and when a particle appears to be destroyed, it is not 
lost. It has merely enfolded back into the deeper order from which it 
sprang. A piece of holographic film and the image it generates are also 
an example of an implicate and explicate order. The film is an implicate 
order because the image encoded in its interference patterns is a hidden 
totality enfolded throughout the whole. The hologram projected from 
the film is an explicate order because it represents the unfolded and 
perceptible version of the image. 

The constant and flowing exchange between the two orders explains 
how particles, such as the electron in the positronium atom, can 
shape-shift from one kind of particle to another. Such shiftings can be 
viewed as one particle, say an electron, enfolding back into the implicate 
order while another, a photon, unfolds and takes its place. It also 
explains how a quantum can manifest as either a particle or a wave. 
According to Bohm, both aspects are always enfolded in a quantum's 
ensemble, but the way an observer interacts with the ensemble 
determines which aspect unfolds and which remains hidden. As such, 
the role an observer plays in determining the form a quantum takes may 
be no more mysterious than the fact that the way a jeweler manipulates a 
gem determines which of its facets become visible and which do not. 
Because the term hologram usually refers to an image that is static and 
does not convey the dynamic and ever active nature of the incalculable 
enfoldings and unfoldings that moment by moment create our universe, 
Bohm prefers to describe the universe not as a hologram, but as a 
" holomovement. " 

The existence of a deeper and holographically organized order also 
explains why reality becomes nonlocal at the subquantum level. As we 
have seen, when something is organized holographically, all sem- 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


blance of location breaks down. Saying that every part of a piece of 
holographic film contains all the information possessed by the whole is 
really just another way of saying that the information is distributed 
nonlocally. Hence, if the universe is organized according to holographic 
principles, it, too, would be expected to have nonlocal properties. 

The Undivided Wholeness of All Things 

Most mind-boggling of all are Bohm's fully developed ideas about 
wholeness. Because everything in the cosmos is made out of the seam- 
less holographic fabric of the implicate order, he believes it is as 
meaningless to view the universe as composed of "parts," as it is to view 
the different geysers in a fountain as separate from the water out of 
which they flow. An electron is not an "elementary particle." It is just a 
name given to a certain aspect of the holomovement. Dividing reality up 
into parts and then naming those parts is always arbitrary, a product of 
convention, because subatomic particles, and everything else in the 
universe, are no more separate from one another than different patterns 
in an ornate carpet. 

This is a profound suggestion. In his general theory of relativity 
Einstein astounded the world when he said that space and time are not 
separate entities, but are smoothly linked and part of a larger whole he 
called the space-time continuum. Bohm takes this idea a giant step 
further. He says that everything in the universe is part of a continuum. 
Despite the apparent separateness of things at the explicate level, 
everything is a seamless extension of everything else, and ultimately 
even the implicate and explicate orders blend into each other. 

Take a moment to consider this. Look at your hand. Now look at the 
light streaming from the lamp beside you. And at the dog resting at your 
feet. You are not merely made of the same things. You are the same thing. 
One thing. Unbroken. One enormous something that has extended its 
uncountable arms and appendages into all the apparent objects, atoms, 
restless oceans, and twinkling stars in the cosmos. 

Bohm cautions that this does not mean the universe is a giant undif- 
ferentiated mass. Things can be part of an undivided whole and still 
possess their own unique qualities. To illustrate what he means he 

points to the little eddies and whirlpools that often form in a river. At a 
glance such eddies appear to be separate things and possess many 
individual characteristics such as size, rate, and direction of rotation, et 
cetera. But careful scrutiny reveals that it is impossible to determine 
where any given whirlpool ends and the river begins. Thus, Bohm is not 
suggesting that the differences between "things" is meaningless. He 
merely wants us to be aware constantly that dividing various aspects of 
the holomovement into "things" is always an abstraction, a way of 
making those aspects stand out in our perception by our way of thinking. 
In attempts to correct this, instead of calling different aspects of the 
holomovement "things," he prefers to call them "relatively independent 
subtotalities." 10 

Indeed, Bohm believes that our almost universal tendency to fragment 
the world and ignore the dynamic interconnectedness of all things is 
responsible for many of our problems, not only in science but in our lives 
and our society as well. For instance, we believe we can extract the 
valuable parts of the earth without affecting the whole. We believe it is 
possible to treat parts of our body and not be concerned with the whole. 
We believe we can deal with various problems in our society, such as 
crime, poverty, and drug addiction, without addressing the problems in 
our society as a whole, and so on. In his writings Bohm argues 
passionately that our current way of fragmenting the world into parts not 
only doesn't work, but may even lead to our extinction. 

Consciousness as a More Subtle Form of Matter 

In addition to explaining why quantum physicists find so many examples 
of interconnectedness when they plumb the depths of matter, Bohm's 
holographic universe explains many other puzzles. One is the effect 
consciousness seems to have on the subatomic world. As we have seen, 
Bohm rejects the idea that particles don't exist until they are observed. 
But he is not in principle against trying to bring consciousness and 
physics together. He simply feels that most physicists go about it the 
wrong way, by once again trying to fragment reality and saying that one 
separate thing, consciousness, interacts with another separate thing, a 
subatomic particle. 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


Because all such things are aspects of the holomovement, he feels it 
has no meaning to speak of consciousness and matter as interacting. In a 
sense, the observer is the observed. The observer is aJso the measuring 
device, the experimental results, the laboratory, and the breeze that 
blows outside the laboratory. In fact, Bohm believes that consciousness 
is a more subtle form of matter, and the basis for any relationship 
between the two lies not in our own level of reality, but deep in the 
implicate order. Consciousness is present in various degrees of 
enfoidment and unfoldment in all matter, which is perhaps why plasmas 
possess some of the traits of living things. As Bohm puts it, "The ability 
of form to be active is the most characteristic feature of mind, and we 
have something that is mindlike already with the electron." 11 

Similarly, he believes that dividing the universe up into living and 
nonliving things also has no meaning. Animate and inanimate matter are 
inseparably interwoven, and life, too, is enfolded throughout the totality 
of the universe. Even a rock is in some way alive, says Bohm, for life 
and intelligence are present not only in all of matter, but in "energy," 
"space," "time," "the fabric of the entire universe," and everything else 
we abstract out of the holomovement and mistakenly view as separate 

The idea that consciousness and life (and indeed all things) are 
ensembles enfolded throughout the universe has an equally dazzling flip 
side. Just as every portion of a hologram contains the image of the whole, 
every portion of the universe enfolds the whole. This means that if we 
knew how to access it we could find the Andromeda galaxy in the 
thumbnail of our left hand. We could also find Cleopatra meeting Caesar 
for the first time, for in principle the whole past and implications for the 
whole future are also enfolded in each small region of space and time. 
Every cell in our body enfolds the entire cosmos. So does every leaf, 
every raindrop, and every dust mote, which gives new meaning to 
William Blake's famous poem: 

To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a 
Heaven in a Wild Flower, Hold Infinity in 
the palm of your hand And Eternity in an 

The Energy of a Trillion Atomic Bombs in 
Every Cubic Centimeter of Space 

If our universe is only a pale shadow of a deeper order, what else lies 
hidden, enfolded in the warp and weft of our reality? Bohm has a 
suggestion. According to our current understanding of physics, every 
region of space is awash with different kinds of fields composed of 
waves of varying lengths. Each wave always has at least some energy. 
When physicists calculate the minimum amount of energy a wave can 
possess, they find that every cubic centimeter of empty space contains 
more energy than the total energy of all the matter in the known 

Some physicists refuse to take this calculation seriously and believe it 
must somehow be in error. Bohm thinks this infinite ocean of energy 
does exist and tells us at least a little about the vast and hidden nature of 
the implicate order. He feels most physicists ignore the existence of this 
enormous ocean of energy because, like fish who are unaware of the 
water in which they swim, they have been taught to focus primarily on 
objects embedded in the ocean, on matter. 

Bohm's view that space is as real and rich with process as the matter 
that moves through it reaches full maturity in his ideas about the 
implicate sea of energy. Matter does not exist independently from the 
sea, from so-called empty space. It is a part of space. To explain what he 
means, Bohm offers the following analogy: A crystal cooled to absolute 
zero will allow a stream of electrons to pass through it without scattering 
them. If the temperature is raised, various flaws in the crystal will lose 
their transparency, so to speak, and begin to scatter electrons. Prom an 
electron's point of view such flaws would appear as pieces of "matter" 
floating in a sea of nothingness, but this is not really the case. The 
nothingness and the pieces of matter do not exist independently from 
one another. They are both part of the same fabric, the deeper order of 
the crystal. 

Bohm believes the same is true at our own level of existence. Space is 
not empty. It is full, a plenum as opposed to a vacuum, and is the ground 
for the existence of everything, including ourselves. The universe is not 
separate from this cosmic sea of energy, it is a ripple on its surface, a 
comparatively small "pattern of excitation" in the midst of an 
unimaginably vast ocean. "This excitation pattern is relatively 
autonomous and gives rise to approximately recurrent, stable and 



The Cosmos as Hologram 


separable projections into a three-dimensional explicate order of mani- 
festation/' states Bohm. z In other words, despite its apparent materiality 
and enormous size, the universe does not exist in and of itself, but is the 
stepchild of something far vaster and more ineffable. More than that, it is 
not even a major production of this vaster something, but is only a 
passing shadow, a mere hiccup in the greater scheme of things. 

This infinite sea of energy is not all that is enfolded in the implicate 
order. Because the implicate order is the foundation that has given birth 
to everything in our universe, at the very least it also contains every 
subatomic particle that has been or will be; every configuration of matter, 
energy, life, and consciousness that is possible, from quasars to the brain 
of Shakespeare, from the double helix, to the forces that control the sizes 
and shapes of galaxies. And even this is not all it may contain. Bohm 
concedes that there is no reason to believe the implicate order is the end 
of things. There may be other undreamed of orders beyond it, infinite 
stages of further development. 

Experimental Support for Bohm's 
Holographic Universe 

A number of tantalizing findings in physics suggest that Bohm may be 
correct. Even disregarding the implicate sea of energy, space is filled 
with light and other electromagnetic waves that constantly crisscross 
and interfere with one another. As we have seen, all particles are also 
waves. This means that physical objects and everything else we perceive 
in reality are composed of interference patterns, a fact that has 
undeniable holographic implications. 

Another compelling piece of evidence comes from a recent experi- 
mental finding. In the 1970s the technology became available to actually 
perform the two-particle experiment outlined by Bell, and a number of 
different researchers attempted the task. Although the findings were 
promising, none was able to produce conclusive results. Then in 1982 
physicists Alain Aspect, Jean Dalibard and Gerard Roger of the Institute 
of Optics at the University of Paris succeeded. First they produced a 
series of twin photons by heating calcium atoms with lasers. Then they 
allowed each photon to travel in opposite directions 

through 6.5 meters of pipe and pass through special filters that directed 
them toward one of two possible polarization analyzers. It took each 
filter 10 billionths of a second to switch between one analyzer or the 
other, about 30 billionths of a second less than it took for light to travel 
the entire 1 3 meters separating each set of photons. In this way Aspect 
and his colleagues were able to rule out any possibility of the photons 
communicating through any known physical process. 

Aspect and his team discovered that, as quantum theory predicted, 
each photon was still able to correlate its angle of polarization with that 
of its twin. This meant that either Einstein's ban against faster-than-light 
communication was being violated, or the two photons were nonlocally 
connected. Because most physicists are opposed to admitting 
faster-than-light processes into physics, Aspect's experiment is 
generally viewed as virtual proof that the connection between the two 
photons is nonlocal. Furthermore, as physicist Paul Davis of the Uni- 
versity of Newcastle upon Tyne, England, observes, since all particles 
are continually interacting and separating, "the nonlocal aspects of 
quantum systems is therefore a general properly of nature." 13 

Aspect's findings do not prove that Bohm's model of the universe is 
correct, but they do provide it with tremendous support. Indeed, as 
mentioned, Bohm does not believe any theory is correct in an absolute 
sense, including his own. All are only approximations of the truth, finite 
maps we use to try to chart territory that is both infinite and indivisible. 
This does not mean he feels his theory is not testable. He is confident 
that at some point in the future techniques will be developed which will 
allow his ideas to be tested (when Bohm is criticized on this point he 
notes that there are a number of theories in physics, such as "superstring 
theory," which will probably not be testable for several decades). 

The Reaction of the Physics Community 

Most physicists are skeptical of Bohm's ideas. For example, Yale phys- 
icist Lee Smolin simply does not find Bohm's theory "very compelling, 
physically." 1 " Nonetheless, there is an almost universal respect for 
Bohm's intelligence. The opinion of Boston University physicist Abner 
Shimony is representative of this view. "I'm afraid I just don't under- 
stand his theory. It is certainly a metaphor and the question is how 



literally to take the metaphor. StiH, he has really thought very deeply 
about the matter and 1 think he's done a tremendous service by bringing 
these questions to the forefront of physics's research instead of just 
having them swept under the rug. He's been a courageous, daring, and 
imaginative man." 15 

Such skepticism notwithstanding, there are also physicists who are 
sympathetic to Bohm's ideas, including such big guns as Roger Penrose 
of Oxford, the creator of the modern theory of the black hole; Bernard 
d'Espagnat of the University of Paris, one of the world's leading 
authorities on the conceptual foundations of quantum theory; and 
Cambridge's Brian Josephson, winner of the 1973 Nobel Prize in 
physics. Josephson believes Bohm's implicate order may someday even 
lead to the inclusion of God or Mind within the framework of science, 
an idea Josephson supports. 16 

Pribram and Bohm Together 

Considered together, Bohm and Pribram's theories provide a profound 
new way of looking at the world: Our brains mathematically construct 
objective reality by interpreting frequencies that are ultimately 
projections from another dimension, a deeper order of existence that is 
beyond both space and time: The brain is a hologram enfolded in a 
holographic universe. 

For Pribram, this synthesis made him realize that the objective world 
does not exist, at least not in the way we are accustomed to believing. 
What is "out there" is a vast ocean of waves and frequencies, and reality 
looks concrete to us only because our brains are able to take this 
holographic blur and convert it into the sticks and stones and other 
familiar objects that make up our world. How is the brain (which itself is 
composed of frequencies of matter) able to take something as 
insubstantial as a blur of frequencies and make it seem solid to the touch? 
"The kind of mathematical process that Bekesy simulated with his 
vibrators is basic to how our brains construct our image of a world out 
there," Pribram states. 17 In other words, the smoothness of a piece of fine 
china and the feel of beach sand beneath our feet are really just elaborate 
versions of the phantom bmb syndrome. 

The Cosmos as Hologram 


According to Pribram this does not mean there aren't china cups and 
grains of beach sand out there. It simply means that a china cup has two 
very different aspects to its reality. When it is filtered through the lens 
of our brain it manifests as a cup. But if we could get rid of our lenses, 
we'd experience it as an interference pattern. Which one is real and 
which is illusion? "Both are real to me," says Pribram, "or, if you want 
to say, neither of them are real.'" 8 

This state of affairs is not limited to china cups. We, too, have two 
very different aspects to our reality. We ean view ourselves as physical 
bodies moving through space. Or we can view ourselves as a blur of 
interference patterns enfolded throughout the cosmic hologram. Bohm 
believes this second point of view might even be the more correct, for to 
think of ourselves as a holographic mind/brain looking at a holographic 
universe is again an abstraction, an attempt to separate two things that 
ultimately cannot be separated. 13 

Do not be troubled if this is difficult to grasp. It is relatively easy to 
understand the idea of holism in something that is external to us, like an 
apple in a hologram. What makes it difficult is that in this case we are 
not looking at the hologram. We are part of the hologram. 

The difficulty is also another indication of how radical a revision 
Bohm and Pribram are trying to make in our way of thinking. But it is 
not the only radical revision. Pribram's assertion that our brains 
construct objects pales beside another of Bohm's conclusions: that we 
even construct space and time. 20 The implications of this view are just 
one of the subjects that will be examined as we explore the effect Bohm 
and Pribram's ideas have had on the work of researchers in other fields. 



If we were to look closely at an individual human 
being, we would immediately notice that it is a 
unique hologram unto itself; self-contained, 
self -generating, and self-knowledgeable. Yet if we 
were to remove this being from its planetary 
context, we would quickly realize that the human 
form is not unlike a mnndala or symbolic poem, for 
within its form and flow lives comprehensive 
information about various physical, social, 
psychological, and evolutionary contexts within 
which it was created. 

— Dr. Ken Dychfwald 

in The Holographic Paradigm 
(Ken Wilber, editor] 

The Holographic Model 
and Psychology 

While the traditional model of psychiatry and psychoanalysis is 
strictly personalistic and biographical, modern consciousness 
research has added new levels, realms, and dimensions and 
shows the human psyche as being essentially commensurate 
with the whole universe and all of existence. 

— Stanislav Grof Beyond 
the Brain 

One area of research on which the holographic model has had an impact 
is psychology. This is not surprising, for, as Bohm has pointed out, 
consciousness itself provides a perfect example of what he means by 
undivided and flowing movement. The ebb and flow of our con- 
sciousness is not precisely definable but can be seen as a deeper and 
more fundamental reality out of which our thoughts and ideas unfold. In 
turn, these thoughts and ideas are not unlike the ripples, eddies, and 
whirlpools that form in a flowing stream, and like the whirlpools in a 
stream some can recur and persist in a more or less stable way, while 
others are evanescent and vanish almost as quickly as they appear. The 
holographic idea also sheds light on the unexplainable linkages that can 
sometimes occur between the consciousnesses of two or more 
individuals. One of the most famous examples of such linkage is em- 




bodied in Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung's concept of a collective uncon- 
scious. Early in his career Jung became convinced that the dreams, 
artwork, fantasies, and hallucinations of his patients often contained 
symbols and ideas that could not be explained entirely as products of 
their personal history. Instead, such symbols more closely resembled the 
images and themes of the world's great mythologies and religions. Jung 
concluded that myths, dreams, hallucinations, and religious visions all 
spring from the same source, a collective unconscious that is shared by 
all people. 

One experience that led Jung to this conclusion took place in 1 906 and 
involved the hallucination of a young man suffering from paranoid 
schizophrenia. One day while making his rounds Jung found the young 
man standing at a window and staring up at the sun. The man was also 
moving his head from side to side in a curious manner. When Jung 
asked him what he was doing he explained that he was looking at the 
sun's penis, and when he moved his head from side to side, the sun's 
penis moved and caused the wind to blow. 

At the time Jung viewed the man's assertion as the product of a 
hallucination. But several years later he came across a translation of a 
two-thousand-year-old Persian religious text that changed his mind. The 
text consisted of a series of rituals and invocations designed to bring on 
visions. It described one of the visions and said that if the participant 
looked at the sun he would see a tube hanging down from it, and when 
the tube moved from side to side it would cause the wind to blow. Since 
circumstances made it extremely unlikely that the man had had contact 
with the text containing the ritual, Jung concluded that the man's vision 
was not simply a product of his unconscious mind, but had bubbled up 
from a deeper level, from the collective unconscious of the human race 
itself. Jung called such images archetypes and believed they were so 
ancient it's as if each of us has the memory of a two-million-year-old 
man lurking somewhere in the depths of our unconscious minds. 

Although Jung's concept of a collective unconscious has had an 
enormous impact on psychology and is now embraced by untold thou- 
sands of psychologists and psychiatrists, our current understanding of 
the universe provides no mechanism for explaining its existence. The 
interconnectedness of all things predicted by the holographic model, 
however, does offer an explanation. In a universe in which ail things are 
infinitely interconnected, all consciousnesses are also interconnected. 
Despite appearances, we are beings without borders. Or as 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


Eohm puts it, "Deep down the consciousness of mankind is one." 1 

If each of us has access to the unconscious knowledge of the entire 
human race, why aren't we all walking encyclopedias? Psychologist 
Robert M. Anderson, Jr., of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, 
New York, believes it is because we are only able to tap into information 
in the implicate order that is directly relevant to our memories. Anderson 
calls this selective process personal resonance and likens it to the fact 
that a vibrating tuning fork will resonate with (or set up a vibration in) 
another tuning fork only if the second tuning fork possesses a similar 
structure, shape, and size, "Due to personal resonance, relatively few of 
the almost infinite variety of 'images' in the implicate holographic 
structure of the universe are available to an individual's personal 
consciousness," says Anderson. "Thus, when enlightened persons 
glimpsed this unitive consciousness centuries ago, they did not write out 
relativity theory because they were not studying physics in a context 
similar to that in which Einstein studied physics."" 

Dreams and the Holographic Universe 

Another researcher who believes Bohm's implicate order has applica- 
tions in psychology is psychiatrist Montague Uilman, the founder of the 
Dream Laboratory at the Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, New 
York, and a professor emeritus of clinical psychiatry at the Albert 
Einstein College of Medicine, also in New York. Ullman's initial 
interest in the holographic concept stemmed also from its suggestion 
that all people are interconnected in the holographic order. He has good 
reason for his interest Throughout the 1960s and 1970s he was 
responsible for many of the ESP dream experiments mentioned in the 
introduction. Even today the ESP dream studies conducted at 
Maimonides stand as some of the best empirical evidence that, in our 
dreams at least, we are able to communicate with one another in ways 
that cannot presently be explained. 

In a typical experiment a paid volunteer who claimed to possess no 
psychic ability was asked to sleep in a room in the lab while a person in 
another room concentrated on a randomly selected painting and tried to 
get the volunteer to dream of the image it contained. Sometimes the 
results were inconclusive. But other times the volunteers bad dreams 
that were clearly influenced by the paintings. For exam- 



pie, when the target painting was Tamayo's Animals, a picture depict-ing 
two dogs flashing their teeth and howling over a pile of bones, the test 
subject dreamed she was at a banquet where there was not enough meat 
and everyone was warily eyeing one another as they greedily ate their 
allotted portions. 

In another experiment the target picture was Chagall's Paris from a 
Window, a brightly colored painting depicting a man looking out a 
window at the Paris skyline. The painting also contained several other 
unusual features, including a cat with a human face, several small figures 
of men flying through the air, and a chair covered with flowers. Over the 
course of several nights the test subject dreamed repeatedly about things 
French, French architecture, a French policeman's hat, and a man in 
French attire gazing at various "layers" of a French village. Some of the 
images in these dreams also appeared to be specific references to the 
painting's vibrant colors and unusual features, such as the image of a 
group of bees flying around flowers, and a brightly colored Mardi 
Gras-type celebration in which the people were wearing costumes and 
masks. 3 

Although Ullman believes such findings are evidence of the underlying 
state of interconnectedness Eohm is talking about, he feels that an even 
more profound example of holographic wholeness can be found in 
another aspect of dreaming. That is the ability of our dreaming selves 
often to be far wiser than we ourselves are in our waking state. For 
instance, Ullman says that in his psychoanalytic practice he could have a 
patient who seemed completely unenlightened when he was 
awake — mean, selfish, arrogant, exploitative, and manipulative; a 
person who had fragmented and dehumanized all of his interpersonal 
relationships. But no matter how spiritually blind a person may be, or 
unwilling to recognize his or her own shortcomings, dreams invariably 
depict their failings honestly and contain metaphors that seem designed 
to prod him or her gently into a state of greater self-awareness. 

Moreover, such dreams were not one-time occurrences. During the 
course of his practice Ullman noticed that when one of his patients failed 
to recognize or accept some truth about himself, that truth would surface 
again and again in his dreams, in different metaphorical guises and 
linked with different related experiences from his past, but always in an 
apparent attempt to offer him new opportunities to come to terms with 
the truth. 

Because a man can ignore the counsel of his dreams and still live to be 
a hundred, Ullman believes this self -monitoring process is striv- 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


ing for more than just the welfare of the individual. He believes that 
nature is concerned with the survival of the species. He also agrees with 
Bohm on the importance of wholeness and feels that dreams are nature's 
way of faying to counteract our seemingly unending compulsion to 
fragment the world. "An individual can disconnect from all that's 
cooperative, meaningful, and loving and still survive, but nations don't 
have that luxury. Unless we learn how to overcome all the ways we've 
fragmented the human race, nationally, religiously, economically, or 
whatever, we are going to continue to find ourselves in a position where 
we can accidentally destroy the whole picture," says Ullman. "The only 
way we can do that is to look at how we fragment our existence as 
individuals. Dreams reflect our individual experience, but I think that's 
because there's a greater underlying need to preserve the species, to 
maintain species-connectedness. " 4 

What is the source of the unending flow of wisdom that bubbles up in 
our dreams? Ullman admits that he doesn't know, but he offers a 
suggestion. Given that the implicate order represents in a sense an 
infinite information source, perhaps it is the origin of this greater fund 
Of knowledge. Perhaps dreams are a bridge between the perceptual and 
nonmanifest orders and represent a "natural transformation of the 
implicate into the explicate." 6 If Ullman is correct in this supposition it 
stands the traditional psychoanalytic view of dreams on its ear, for 
instead of dream content being something that ascends into con- 
sciousness from a primitive substratum of the personality, quite the 
opposite would be true. 

Psychosis and the Implicate Order 

Ullman believes that some aspects of psychosis ean also be explained by 
the holographic idea. Both Bohm and Pribram have noted that the 
experiences mystics have reported throughout the ages — such as feel- 
ings of cosmic oneness with the universe, a sense of unity with all life, 
and so forth — sound very much like descriptions of the implicate Order. 
They suggest that perhaps mystics are somehow able to peer beyond 
ordinary explicate reality and glimpse its deeper, more holographic 
qualities. Ullman believes that psychotics are also able to experience 
certain aspects of the holographic level of reality. But because they are 
unable to order their experiences rationally, these 



glimpses are only tragic parodies of the ones reported by mystics. 

For example, schizophrenics often report oceanic feelings of oneness 
with the universe, but in a magic, delusional way. They describe feeling 
a loss of boundaries between themselves and others, a belief that leads 
them to think their thoughts are no longer private. They believe they are 
able to read the thoughts of others. And instead of viewing- people, 
objects, and concepts as individual things, they often view them as 
members of larger and larger subclasses, a tendency that seems to be a 
way of expressing the holographic quality of the reality in which they 
find themselves. 

Ullman believes that schizophrenics try to convey their sense of 
unbroken wholeness in the way they view space and time. Studies have 
shown that schizophrenics often treat the converse of any relation as 
identical to the relation. 6 For instance, according to the schizophrenic's 
way of thinking, saying that "event A follows event B" is the same as 
saying "event B follows event A." The idea of one event following 
another in any kind of time sequence is meaningless, for all points in 
time are viewed equal. The same is true of spatial relations. If a man's 
head is above his shoulders, then his shoulders are also above his head. 
Like the image in a piece of holographic film, things no longer have 
precise locations, and spatial relationships cease to have meaning. 

Ullman believes that certain aspects of holographic thinking are even 
more pronounced in manicTdepressives. Whereas the schizophrenic 
only gets whiffs of the holographic order, the manic is deeply involved 
in it and grandiosely identifies with its infinite potential. "He can't keep 
up with all the thoughts and ideas that come at him in so overwhelming 
a way," states Ullman, "He has to lie, dissemble, and manipulate those 
about him so as to accommodate to his expansive vista. The end result, 
of course, is mostly chaos and confusion mixed with occasional 
outbursts of creativity and success in consensual reality." 7 In turn, the 
manic becomes depressed after he returns from this surreal vacation and 
once again faces the hazards and chance occurrences of everyday life. 

If it is true that we all encounter aspects of the implicate order when 
we dream, why don't these encounters have the same effect on us as they 
do on psychotics? One reason, says Ullman, is that we leave the unique 
and challenging logic of the dream behind when we wake. Because of 
his condition the psychotic is forced to contend with it while 
simultaneously trying to function in everyday reality. Ullman also 
theorizes that when we dream, most of us have a natural protective 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


mechanism that keeps us from coming into contact with more of the 
implicate order than we can cope with. 

Lucid Dreams and Parallel Universes 

In recent years psychologists have become increasingly interested in 
lucid dreams, a type of dream in which the dreamer maintains full 
waking consciousness and is aware that he or she is dreaming. In 
addition to the consciousness factor, lucid dreams are unique in several 
other ways. Unlike normal dreams in which the dreamer is primarily a 
passive participant, in a lucid dream the dreamer is often able to control 
the dream in various ways — turn nightmares into pleasant experiences, 
change the setting of the dream, and/or summon up particular 
individuals or situations. Lucid dreams are also much more vivid and 
suffused with vitality than normal dreams. In a lucid dream marble 
floors seem eerily solid and real, flowers, dazzlingly colorful and 
fragrant, and everything is vibrant and strangely energized. Researchers 
studying lucid dreams believe they may lead to new ways to stimulate 
personal growth, enhance self-confidence, promote mental and physical 
health, and facilitate creative problem solving. 1 * 

At the 1987 annual meeting of the Association for the Study of 
Dreams held in Washington, D.C., physicist Fred Alan Wolf delivered a 
talk in which he asserted that the holographic model may help explain 
this unusual phenomenon. Wolf, an occasional lucid dreamer himself, 
points out that a piece of holographic film actually generates two images, 
a virtual image that appears to be in the space behind the film, and a real 
image that comes into focus in the space in front of the film. One 
difference between the two is that the light waves that compose a virtual 
image seem to be diverging/rom an apparent focus or source. As we 
have seen, this is an illusion, for the virtual image of a hologram has no 
more extension in space than does the image in a mirror. But the real 
image of a hologram is formed by light waves that are coming to a focus, 
and this is not an illusion. The real image does possess extension in 
space. Unfortunately, little attention is paid to this real image in the 
usual applications of holography because an image that comes into 
focus in empty air is invisible and can only be seen when dust particles 
pass through it, or when someone blows a puff of smoke through it. 



Wolf believes that all dreams are internal holograms, and ordinary 
dreams are less vivid because they are virtual images. However, he 
thinks the brain also has the ability to generate real images, and that is 
exactly what it does when we are dreaming lucidly. The unusual 
vibrancy of the lucid dream is due to the fact that the waves are 
converging and not diverging. "If there is a 'viewer' where these waves 
focus, that viewer wil) be bathed in the scene, and the scene coming to a 
focus will 'contain' him. In this way the dream experience will appear 
'lucid,' " observes Wolf. 8 

Like Pribram, Wolf believes our minds create the illusion of reality 
"out there" through the same kind of processes studied by Bekesy. He 
believes these processes are also what allows the lucid dreamer to create 
subjective realities in which things like marble floors and flowers are as 
tangible and real as their so-called objective counterparts. In fact, he 
thinks our ability to be lucid in our dreams suggests that there may not be 
much difference between the world at large and the world inside our 
heads. "When the observer and the observed can separate and say this is 
the observed and this is the observer, which is an effect one seems to be 
having when lucid, then I think it's questionable whether [lucid dreams] 
should be considered subjective," says Wolf. 10 

Wolf postulates that lucid dreams (and perhaps all dreams) are 
actually visits to parallel universes. They are just smaller holograms 
within the larger and more inclusive cosmic hologram. He even suggests 
that the ability to lucid-dream might better be called parallel universe 
awareness. "I call it parallel universe awareness because I believe that 
parallel universes arise as other images in the hologram," Wolf states. 11 
This and other similar ideas about the ultimate nature of dreaming will 
be explored in greater depth later in the book. 

Hitching a Ride on the Infinite Subway 

The idea that we are able to access images from the collective uncon- 
scious, or even visit parallel dream universes, pales beside the conclu- 
sions of another prominent researcher who has been influenced by the 
holographic model. He is Stanislav Grof, chief of psychiatric research at 
the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center and an assistant professor of 
psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


After more than thirty years of studying nonordinary states of con- 
sciousness, Grof has concluded that the avenues of exploration available 
to our psyches via holographic interconnectedness are more than vast. 
They are virtually endless. 

Grof first became interested in nonordinary states of consciousness in 
the 1950s while investigating the clinicai uses of the hallucinogen LSD 
at the Psychiatric Research Institute in his native Prague, Czech- 
oslovakia. The purpose of his research was to determine whether LSD 
had any therapeutic applications. When Grof began his research, most 
scientists viewed the LSD experience as little more than a stress reaction, 
the brain's way of responding to a noxious chemical. But when Grof 
studied the records of his patient's experiences he did not find evidence 
of any recurring stress reaction. Instead, there was a definite continuity 
running through each of the patient's sessions. "Rather than being 
unrelated and random, the experiential content seemed to represent a 
successive unfolding of deeper and deeper levels of the unconscious," 
says Grof. 12 This suggested that repeated LSD sessions had important 
ramifications for the practice and theory of psychotherapy, and provided 
Grof and his colleagues with the impetus they needed to continue the 
research. The results were striking. It quickly became clear that serial 
LSD sessions were able to expedite the psychotherapeutic process and 
shorten the time necessary for the treatment of many disorders. 
Traumatic memories that had haunted individuals for years were 
unearthed and dealt with, and sometimes even serious conditions, such 
as schizophrenia, were cured. ls But what was even more startling was that 
many of the patients rapidly moved beyond issues involving their 
illnesses and into areas that were uncharted by Western psychology. 

One common experience was the reliving of what it was like to be in 
the womb. At first Grof thought these were just imagined experiences, 
but as the evidence continued to amass he realized that the knowledge of 
embryology inherent in the descriptions was often far superior to the 
patients' previous education in the area. Patients accurately described 
certain characteristics of the heart sounds of their mother, the nature of 
acoustic phenomena in the peritoneal cavity, specific details concerning 
blood circulation in the placenta, and even details about the various 
cellular and biochemical processes taking place. They also described 
important thoughts and feelings their mother had had during pregnancy 
and events such as physical traumas she had experienced. 


Whenever possible Grof investigated these assertions, and on several 
occasions was able to verify them by questioning the mother and other 
individuals involved. Psychiatrists, psychologists, and biologists who 
experienced prebirth memories during their training for the program (all 
the therapists who participated in the study also had to undergo several 
sessions of LSD psychotherapy) expressed similar astonishment at the 
apparent authenticity of the experiences." 

Most disconcerting of all were those experiences in which the pa- 
tient's consciousness appeared to expand beyond the usual boundaries of 
the ego and explore what it was like to be other living things and even 
other objects. For example, Grof had one female patient who suddenly 
became convinced she had assumed the identity of a female prehistoric 
reptile. She not only gave a richly detailed description of what it felt like 
to be encapsuled in such a form, but noted that the portion of the male of 
the species' anatomy she found most sexually arousing was a patch of 
colored scales on the side of its head. Although the woman had no prior 
knowledge of such things, a conversation Grof had with a zoologist later 
confirmed that in certain species of reptiles, colored areas on the head do 
indeed play an important role as triggers of sexual arousal. 

Patients were also able to tap into the consciousness of their relatives 
and ancestors. One woman experienced what it was like to be her 
mother at the age of three and accurately described a frightening event 
that had befallen her mother at the time. The woman also gave a precise 
description of the house her mother had lived in as well as the white 
pinafore she had been wearing — all details her mother later confirmed 
and admitted she had never talked about before. Other patients gave 
equally accurate descriptions of events that had befallen ancestors who 
had lived decades and even centuries before. 

Other experiences included the accessing of racial and collective 
memories. Individuals of Slavic origin experienced what it was like to 
participate in the conquests of Genghis Khan's Mongolian hordes, to 
dance in trance with the Kalahari bushmen, to undergo the initiation 
rites of the Australian aborigines, and to die as sacrificial victims of the 
Aztecs. And again the descriptions frequently contained obscure 
historical facts and a degree of knowledge that was often completely at 
odds with the patient's education, race, and previous exposure to the 
subject. For instance, one uneducated patient gave a richly detailed 
account of the techniques involved in the Egyptian practice of embalm- 
ing and mummification, including the form and meaning of various 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


amulets and sepulchral boxes, a list of the materials used in the fixing of 
the mummy cloth, the size and shape of the mummy bandages, and 
other esoteric facets of Egyptian funeral services. Other individuals 
tuned into the cultures of the Far East and not only gave impressive 
descriptions of what it was like to have a Japanese, Chinese, or Tibetan 
psyche, but also related various Taoist or Buddhist teachings. 

In fact, there did not seem to be any limit to what Grof s LSD subjects 
could tap into. They seemed capable of knowing what it was like to be 
every animal, and even plant, on the tree of evolution. They could 
experience what it was like to be a blood cell, an atom, a thermonuclear 
process inside the sun, the consciousness of the entire planet, and even 
the consciousness of the entire cosmos. More than that, they displayed 
the ability to transcend space and time, and occasionally they related 
uncannily accurate precognitive information. In an even stranger vein 
they sometimes encountered nonhuman intelligences during their 
cerebral travels, discarnate beings, spirit guides from "higher planes of 
consciousness," and other suprahuman entities. 

On occasion subjects also traveled to what appeared to be other 
universes and other levels of reality. In one particularly unnerving 
session a young man suffering from depression found himself in what 
seemed to be another dimension. It had an eerie luminescence, and 
although he could not see anyone he sensed that it was crowded with 
discarnate beings. Suddenly he sensed a presence very close to him, and 
to his surprise it began to communicate with him telepathically. It asked 
him to please contact a couple who lived in the Moravian city of 
Kromeriz and let them know that their son Ladislav was well taken care 
of and doing all right. It then gave him the couple's name, street address, 
and telephone number. 

The information meant nothing to either Grof or the young man and 
seemed totally unrelated to the young man's problems and treatment. 
Still, Grof could not put it out of his mind. "After some hesitation and 
with mixed feelings, I finally decided to do what certainly would have 
made me the target of my colleagues' jokes, had they found out," says 
Grof. "I went to the telephone, dialed the number in Kromeriz, and 
asked if I could speak with Ladislav, To my astonishment, the woman 
on the other side of the line started to cry. When she calmed down, she 
told me with a broken voice: 'Our son is not with us any more; he passed 
away, we lost him three weeks ago.' " 1IV 

In the 1960s Grof was offered a position at the Maryland Psychiatric 



Research Center and moved to the United States. The center was also 
doing controlled studies of the psychotherapeutic applications of LSD, 
and this allowed Grof to continue his research. In addition to examining 
the effects of repeated LSD sessions on individuals with various mental 
disorders, the center also studied its effects on "normal" volun- 
teers — doctors, nurses, painters, musicians, philosophers, scientists, 
priests, and theologians. Again Grof found the same kind of phenomena 
occurring again and again. It was almost as if LSD provided the human 
consciousness with access to a kind of infinite subway system, a 
labyrinth of tunnels and byways that existed in the subterranean reaches 
of the unconscious, and one that literally connected everything in the 
universe with everything else. 

After personally guiding over three thousand LSD sessions (each 
lasting at least five hours) and studying the records of more than two 
thousand sessions conducted by colleagues, Grof became unalterably 
convinced that something extraordinary was going on. "After years of 
conceptual struggle and confusion, I have concluded that the data from 
LSD research indicate an urgent need for a drastic revision of the 
existing paradigms for psychology, psychiatry, medicine, and possibly 
science in general," he states. "There is at present little doubt in my mind 
that our current understanding of the universe, of the nature of reality, 
and particularly of human beings, is superficial, incorrect, and 
incomplete." 16 

Grof coined the term transpersonal to describe such phenomena, 
experiences in which the consciousness transcends the customary 
boundaries of the personality, and in the late 1960s he joined with 
several other like-minded professionals, including the psychologist and 
educator Abraham Maslow, to found a new branch of psychology called 
transpersonal psychology. 

If our current way of looking at reality cannot account for transper- 
sonal events, what new understanding might take its place? Grof 
believes it is the holographic model. As he points out, the essential 
characteristics of transpersonal experiences — the feeling that ail 
boundaries are illusory, the lack of distinction between part and whole, 
and the interconnectedness of all things — are all qualities one would 
expect to find in a holographic universe. In addition, he feels the 
enfolded nature of space and time in the holographic domain explains 
why transpersonal experiences are not bound by the usual spatial or 
temporal limitations. 

Grof thinks that the almost endless capacity holograms have for 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


information storage and retrieval also accounts for the fact that visions, 
fantasies, and other "psychological gestalts," all contain an enormous 
amount of information about an individual's personality. A single image 
experienced during an LSD session might contain information about a 
person's attitude toward life in general, a trauma he experienced during 
childhood, how much self-esteem he has, how he feels about his parents, 
and how he feels about his marriage — all embodied in the overall 
metaphor of the scene. Such experiences are holographic in another way, 
in that each small part of the scene can also contain an entire 
constellation of information. Thus, free association and other analytical 
techniques performed on the scene's mjnis-cule details can call forth an 
additional flood of data about the individual involved. 

The composite nature of archetypal images can be modeled by the 
holographic idea. As Grof observes, holography makes it possible to 
build up a sequence of exposures, such as pictures of every member of a 
large family, on the same piece of film. When this is done the developed 
piece of film will contain the image of an individual that represents not 
one member of the family, but all of them at the same time. "These 
genuinely composite images represent an exquisite model of a certain 
type of transpersonal experience, such as the archetypal images of the 
Cosmic Man, Woman, Mother, Father, Lover, Trickster, Fool, or 
Martyr," says Grof. 1T 

If each exposure is taken at a slightly different angle, instead of 
resulting in a composite picture, the piece of film can be used to create a 
series of holographic images that appear to flow into one another. Grof 
believes this illustrates another aspect of the visionary experience, 
namely, the tendency of countless images to unfold in rapid sequence, 
each one appearing and then dissolving into the next as if by magic. He 
thinks holography's success at modeling so many different aspects of the 
archetypal experience suggests that there is a deep link between 
holographic processes and the way archetypes are produced. 

Indeed, Grof feels that evidence of a hidden, holographic order 
surfaces virtually every time one experiences a nonordinary state of 

Bohm's concept of the unfolded and enfolded orders and the idea that 
certain important aspects of reality are not accessible to experience and 
study under ordinary circumstances are of direct relevance for the un- 



derstanding of unusual states of consciousness. Individuals who have 
experienced various conordinary states of consciousness, including 
we)i-educated and sophisticated scientists from various disciplines, 
frequently report that they entered hidden domains of reality that 
seemed to be authentic and in some sense implicit in, and supraordinated 
to, everyday reality. 18 

Holotropic Therapy 

Perhaps Grofs most remarkable discovery is that the same phenomena 
reported by individuals who have taken LSD can also be experienced 
without resorting to drugs of any kind. To this end, Grof and his wife, 
Christina, have developed a simple, nondrug technique for inducing 
these kolotropic, or nonordinary, states of consciousness. They define a 
holotropic state of consciousness as one in which it is possible to access 
the holographic labyrinth that connects all aspects of existence. These 
include one's biological, psychological, racial, and spiritual history, the 
past, present, and future of the world, other levels of reality, and all the 
other experiences already discussed in the context of the LSD 

The Grofs call their technique holotropic therapy and use only rapid 
and controlled breathing, evocative music, and massage and body work, 
to induce altered states of consciousness. To date, thousands of 
individuals have attended their workshops and report experiences that 
are every bit as spectacular and emotionally profound as those described 
by subjects of Grofs previous work on LSD. Grof describes his current 
work and gives a detailed account of his methods in his book The 
Adventure of Self-Discovery. 

Vortices of Thought and Multiple Personalities 

A number of researchers have used the holographic model to explain 
various aspects of the thinking process itself. For example, New York 
psychiatrist Edgar A. Levenson believes the hologram provides a valu- 
able model for understanding the sudden and transformative changes 
individuals often experience during psychotherapy. He bases his con- 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


elusion on the fact that such changes take place no matter what tech- 
nique or psychoanalytic approach the therapist uses. Hence, he feels all 
psychoanalytic approaches are purely ceremonial, and change is due to 
something else entirely. 

Levenson believes that something is resonance. A therapist always 
knows when therapy is going well, he observes. There is a strong feeling 
that the pieces of an elusive pattern are all about to come together. The 
therapist is not saying anything new to the patient, but instead seems to 
be resonating with something the patient already unconsciously knows: 
"It is as though a huge, three-dimensional, spatially coded representation 
of the patient's experience develops in the therapy, running through 
every aspect of his life, his history and his participation with the 
therapist. At some point there is a kind of 'overload' and everything falls 
into place." 19 

Levenson believes these three-dimensional representations of expe- 
rience are holograms buried deep in the patient's psyche, and a reso- 
nance of feeling between the therapist and patient causes them to emerge 
in a process similar to the way a laser of a certain frequency causes an 
image made with a laser of the same frequency to emerge from a 
multiple image hologram. "The holographic model suggests a radically 
new paradigm which might give us a fresh way of perceiving and 
connecting clinical phenomena which have always been known to be 
important, but were relegated to the 'art' of psychotherapy," says 
Levenson. "It offers a possible theoretical template for change and a 
practical hope of clarifying psychotherapeutic technique." 20 

Psychiatrist David Shainberg, associate dean of the Postgraduate 
Psychoanalytic Program at the William Alanson White Institute of 
Psychiatry in New York, feels Bohm's assertion that thoughts are like 
vortices in a river should be taken literally and explains why our 
attitudes and beliefs sometimes become fixed and resistant to change. 
Studies have shown that vortices are often remarkably stable. The Great 
Red Spot of Jupiter, a giant vortex of gas over 25,000 miles wide, has 
remained intact since it was first discovered 300 years ago. Shainberg 
believes this same tendency toward stability is what causes certain 
vortices of thought (our ideas and opinions) to become occasionally 
cemented in our consciousness. 

He feeis the virtual permanence of some vortices is often detrimental 
to our growth as human beings. A particularly powerful vortex can 
dominate our behavior and inhibit our ability to assimilate new ideas and 
information. It can cause us to become repetitious, create block- 



ages in the creative flow of our consciousness, keep us from seeing the 
wholeness of ourselves, and make us feel disconnected from our species. 
Shainberg believes that vortices may even explain things like the nuclear 
arms race: "Look at the nuclear arms race as a vortex arising out of the 
greed of human beings who are isolated in their separate selves and do 
not feel the connection to other human beings. They are also feeling a 
peculiar emptiness and become greedy for everything they ean get to fill 
themselves. Hence nuclear industries proliferate because they provide 
large amounts of money and the greed is so extensive that such people 
do not care what might happen from their actions." 81 

Like Bohm, Shainberg believes our consciousness is constantly un- 
folding out of the implicate order, and when we allow the same vortices 
to take form repeatedly he feels we are erecting a barrier between 
ourselves and the endless positive and novel interactions we could be 
having with this infinite source of all being. To catch a glimmer of what 
we are missing, he suggests we look at a child. Children have not yet had 
the time to form vortices, and this is reflected in the open and flexible 
way they interact with the world. According to Shainberg the sparkling 
aliveness of a child expresses the very essence of the 
unfold-ing-enfolding nature of consciousness when it is unimpeded. 

If you want to become aware of your own frozen vortices of thought, 
Shainberg recommends you pay close attention to the way you behave in 
conversation. When people with set beliefs converse with others, they 
try to justify their identities by espousing and defending their opinions. 
Their judgments seldom change as a result of any new information they 
encounter, and they show little interest in allowing any real 
conversational interaction to take place. A person who is open to the 
flowing nature of consciousness is more willing to see the frozen 
condition of the relationships imposed by such vortices of thought. They 
are committed to exploring conversational interactions, rather than 
endlessly repeating a static litany of opinions. "Human response and 
articulation of that response, feedback of reactions to that response and 
the clarifying of the relationships between different responses, are the 
way human beings participate in the flow of the implicate order," says 
Shainberg. 25 

Another psychological phenomena that bears several earmarks of the 
implicate is multiple personality disorder, or MPD. MPD is a bizarre 
syndrome in which two or more distinct personalities inhabit a 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


single body. Victims of the disorder, or "multiples," often have no 
awareness of their condition. They do not realize that control of their 
body is being passed back and forth between different personalities and 
instead feel they are suffering from some kind of amnesia, confusion, or 
black-out spells. Most multiples average between eight to thirteen 
personalities, although so-called super-multiples may have more than a 
hundred subpersonalities. 

One of the most telling statistics regarding multiples is that 97 percent 
of them have had a history of severe childhood trauma, often in the form 
of monstrous psychological, physical, and sexual abuse. This has led 
many researchers to conclude that becoming a multiple is the psyche's 
way of coping with extraordinary and soul-crushing pain. By dividing 
up into one or more personalities the psyche is able to parcel out the pain, 
in a way, and have several personalities bear what would be too much 
for just one personality to withstand. 

In this sense becoming a multiple may be the ultimate example of 
what Bohm means by fragmentation. It is interesting to note that when 
the psyche fragments itself, it does not become a collection of broken 
and jagged-edged shards, but a collection of smaller wholes, complete 
and self-sustaining with their own traits, motives, and desires. Although 
these wholes are not identical copies of the original personality, they are 
related to the dynamics of the original personality, and this in itself 
suggests that some kind of holographic process is involved. 

Bohm's assertion that fragmentation always eventually proves de- 
structive is also apparent in the syndrome. Although becoming a mul- 
tiple allows a person to survive an otherwise unendurable childhood, it 
brings with it a host of unpleasant side effects. These may include 
depression, anxiety and panic attacks, phobias, heart and respiratory 
problems, unexplained nausea, migrainelike headaches, tendencies to- 
ward self-mutilation, and many other mental and physical disorders. 
Startlingly, but regular as clockwork, most multiples are diagnosed 
when they are between the ages of twenty-eight and thirty-five, a 
"coincidence" that suggests that some inner alarm system may be going 
off at that age, warning them that it is imperative they are diagnosed and 
thus obtain the help they need. This idea seems borne out by the fact that 
multiples who reach their forties before they are diagnosed frequently 
report having the sense that if they did not seek help soon, any chance of 
recovery would be lost. 13 Despite the tempo- 



rary advantages the tortured psyche gains by fragmenting itself, it is 
clear that mental and physical well-being, and perhaps even survival, 
still depend on wholeness. 

Another unusual feature of MPD is that each of a multiple's person- 
alities possesses a different brain-wave pattern. This is surprising, for as 
Frank Putnam, a National Institutes of Health psychiatrist who has 
studied this phenomenon, points out, normally a person's brain-wave 
pattern does not change even in states of extreme emotion. Brainwave 
patterns are not the only thing that varies from personality to personality. 
Blood flow patterns, muscle tone, heart rate, posture, and even allergies 
can ail change as a multiple shifts from one self to the next. 

Since brain-wave patterns are not confined to any single neuron or 
group of neurons, but are a global property of the brain, this too suggests 
that some kind of holographic process may be at work. Just as a 
multiple-image hologram can store and project dozens of whole scenes, 
perhaps the brain hologram can store and call forth a similar multitude 
of whole personalities. In other words, perhaps what we call "self" is 
also a hologram, and when the brain of a multiple clicks from one 
holographic self to the next, these slide -projectorlike shuttlings are 
reflected in the global changes that take place in brain-wave activity as 
well as in the body in general (see fig. 10). The physiological changes 
that occur as a multiple shifts from one personality to the next also have 
profound implications for the relationship between mind and health, and 
will be discussed at greater length in the next chapter. 

A Flaw in the Fabric of Reality 

Another of Jung's great contributions was defining the concept of 
synehronicity. As mentioned in the introduction, synchronicities are 
coincidences that are so unusual and so meaningful they could hardly be 
attributed to chance alone. Each of us has experienced a synehronicity at 
some point in our lives, such as when we learn a strange new word and 
then hear it used in a news broadcast a few hours later, or when we think 
about an obscure subject and then notice other people talking about it. A 
few years back I experienced a series of synchronicities involving 

The Holographic Modei and Psychology 


FIGURE 10. The brain-wave patterns of 
four subpersonalities in an individual suffering from multiple personality disorder. 
Is it possible that the brain uses holographic principles to store the vast amount of 
information necessary to house dozens and even hundreds of personalities in a 
single body? {Redrawn by the author from original art in an article by Bennett G. 
Braun in the American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis) 

the rodeo showman Buffalo Bill. Occasionally, while doing a modest 
workout in the morning before I start writing, I turn on the television. 
One morning in January 1983, 1 was doing push-ups while a game show 
was on, and I suddenly found myself shouting out the name "Buffalo 
Bill!" At first I was puzzled by my outburst, but then I realized the 
game-show host had asked the question "What other name was William 
Frederick Cody known by?" Although I had not been paying conscious 
attention to the show, for some reason my unconscious mind had zeroed 
in on this question and had answered it. At the time 1 did not think much 
of the occurrence and went about my day. A few hours later a friend 
telephoned and asked me if I could settle a friendly argument he was 
having concerning a piece of theater trivia. I offered to try, whereupon 
my friend asked, "Is it true that John Barrymore's dying words were, 
'Aren't you the illegitimate son of Buffalo Bill?' " I thought this second 
encounter with Buffalo Bill was odd but still chalked it up to 
coincidence until later that day when a Smithsonian magazine arrived in 
the mail, and I opened it. One of the lead articles was titled "The Last of 
the Great Scouts Is Back Again." It was about... you guessed it: Buffalo 
Bill. (Incidentally, I 



was unable to answer my friend's trivia question and still have no idea 
whether they were Barrymore's dying words or not) 

As incredible as this experience was, the only thing that seemed 
meaningful about it was its improbable nature. There is, however, 
another kind of synchronicity that is noteworthy not only because of its 
improbability, but because of its apparent relationship to events taking 
place deep in the human psyche. The classic example of this is Jung's 
scarab story. Jung was treating a woman whose staunchly rational 
approach to life made it difficult for her to benefit from therapy. After a 
number of frustrating sessions the woman told Jung about a dream 
involving a scarab beetle. Jung knew that in Egyptian mythology the 
scarab represented rebirth and wondered if the woman's unconscious 
mind was symbolically announcing that she was about to undergo some 
kind of psychological rebirth. He was just about to tell her this when 
something tapped on the window, and he looked up to see a gold-green 
scarab on the other side of the glass (it was the only time a scarab beetle 
had ever appeared at Jung's window). He opened the window and 
allowed the scarab to fly into the room as he presented his interpretation 
of the dream. The woman was so stunned that she tempered her 
excessive rationality, and from that point on her response to therapy 

Jung encountered many such meaningful coincidences during his 
psychotherapeutic work and noticed that they almost always accompa- 
nied periods of emotional intensity and transformation: fundamental 
changes in belief, sudden and new insights, deaths, births, even changes 
in profession. He also noticed that they tended to peak when the new 
realization or insight was just about to surface in a patient's 
consciousness. As his ideas became more widely known, other thera- 
pists began reporting their own experiences with synchronicity. 

For example, Zurich-based psychiatrist Carl Alfred Meier, a longtime 
associate of Jung's, tells of a synchronicity that spanned many years. An 
American woman suffering from serious depression traveled all the way 
from Wuchang, China, to be treated by Meier. She was a surgeon and had 
headed a mission hospital in Wuchang for twenty years. She had also 
become involved in the culture and was an expert in Chinese philosophy. 
During the course of her therapy she told Meier of a dream in which she 
had seen the hospital with one of its wings destroyed. Because her 
identity was so intertwined with the hospital, Meier felt her dream was 
telling her she was losing her sense of self, her American identity, and 
that was the cause of her depression. He 

The Holographic Model and Psychology 


advised her to return to the States, and when she did her depression 
quickly vanished, just as he had predicted. Before she departed he also 
had her do a detailed sketch of the crumbling hospital. 

Years later the Japanese attacked China and bombed Wuchang 
Hospital. The woman sent Meier a copy of Life magazine containing a 
double -page photograph of the partially destroyed hospital, and it was 
identical to the drawing she had produced nine years earlier. The 
symbolic and highly personal message of her dream had somehow 
spilled beyond the boundaries of her psyche and into physical reality, 24 

Because of their striking nature, Jung became convinced that such 
synchronicities were not chance occurrences, but were in fact related to 
the psychological processes of the individuals who experienced them. 
Since he could not conceive how an occurrence deep in the psyehe could 
cause an event or series of events in the physical world, at least in the 
classical sense, he proposed that some new principle must be involved, 
an decimal connecting principle hitherto unknown to science. 

When Jung first advanced this idea, most physicists did not take it 
seriously {although one eminent physicist of the time, Wolfgang Pauli, 
felt it was important enough to coauthor a book with Jung on the subject 
entitled The Interpretation and Nature of the Psyche). But now that the 
existence of nonlocal connections has been established, some physicists 
are giving Jung's idea another look." Physicist Paul Davies states, 
"These non-local quantum effects are indeed a form of synchronicity in 
the sense that they establish a connection — more precisely a 
correlation — between events for which any form of causal linkage is 
forbidden." 25 

Another physicist who takes synchronicity seriously is F. David Peat. 
Peat believes that Jungian-type synchronicities are not only real, but 
offer further evidence of the implicate order. As we have seen, according 
to Bohm the apparent separateness of consciousness and matter is an 
illusion, an artifact that occurs only after both have unfolded into the 
explicate world of objects and sequential time. If there is no division 
between mind and matter in the implicate, the ground from which all 
things spring, then it is not unusual to expect that reality might still be 
shot through with traces of this deep connectivity. Peat believes that 
synchronicities are therefore "flaws" in the 

As has been mentioned, nonlocal effects are not due to a cause-and-effect relationship and ate 
therefore acausal. 



fabric of reality, momentary fissures that allow us a brief glimpse of the 
immense and unitary order underlying all of nature. 

Put another way, Peat thinks that synchronicities reveal the absence of 
division between the physical world and our inner psychological reality. 
Thus the relative scarcity of synchronous experiences in our lives shows 
not only the extent to which we have fragmented ourselves from the 
general field of consciousness, but also the degree to which we have 
sealed ourselves off from the infinite and dazzling potential of the 
deeper orders of mind and reality. According to Peat, when we 
experience a synchrony city, what we are really experiencing "is the 
human mind operating, for a moment, in its true order and extending 
throughout society and nature, moving through orders of increasing 
subtlety, reaching past the source of mind and matter into creativity 
itself." 26 

This is an astounding notion. Virtually all of our commonsense 
prejudices about the world are based on the premise that subjective and 
objective reality are very much separate. That is why synchronicities 
seem so baffling and inexplicable to us. But if there is ultimately no 
division between the physical world and our inner psychological 
processes, then we must be prepared to change more than just our 
commonsense understanding of the universe, for the implications are 

One implication is that objective reality is more like a dream than we 
have previously suspected. For example, imagine dreaming that you are 
sitting at a table and having an evening meal with your boss and his wife. 
As you know from experience, all the various props in the dream — the 
table, the chairs, the plates, and salt and pepper shakers — appear to be 
separate objects. Imagine also that you experience a synchronicity in the 
dream; perhaps you are served a particularly unpleasant dish, and when 
you ask the waiter what it is, he tells you that the name of the dish is 
Your Boss. Realizing that the unpleasant A ness of the dish betrays your 
true feelings about your boss, you become embarrassed and wonder how 
an aspect of your "inner" self has managed to spill over into the "outer" 
reality of the scene you are dreaming. Of course, as soon as you wake up 
you realize the synchronicity was not so strange at all, for there was 
really no division between your "inner" self and the "outer" reality of the 
dream. Similarly, you realize that the apparent separateness of the 
various objects in the dream was also an illusion, for everything was 
produced by a 

The Holographic Model and Psychology _ 


deeper and more fundamental order — the unbroken wholeness of your 
own unconscious mind. 

If there is no division between the mental and physical worlds, these 
same qualities are also true of objective reality. According to Peat, this 
does not mean the material universe is an illusion, because both the 
implicate and the explicate play a role in creating reality. Nor does it 
mean that individuality is iost, any more than the image of a rose is lost 
once it is recorded in a piece of holographic film. It simply means that 
we are again like vortices in a river, unique but inseparable from the 
flow of nature. Or as Peat puts it, "the self lives on but as one aspect of 
the more subtle movement that involves the order of the whole of 
consciousness." 27 

And so we have come full circle, from the discovery that conscious- 
ness contains the whole of objective reality — the entire history of 
biological life on the planet, the world's religions and mythologies, and 
the dynamics of both blood cells and stars — to the discovery that the 
material universe can also contain within its warp and weft the inner- 
most processes of consciousness. Such is the nature of the deep con- 
nectivity that exists between all things in a holographic universe. In the 
next chapter we will explore how this connectivity, as well as other 
aspects of the holographic idea, affect our current understanding of 

I Sing the Body Holographic 

You will hardly know who 1 am or what I mean. But 
I shall be good health to you nevertheless. . . . 

—Walt Whitman, "Song of Myself* 

A sixty-one-year-old man we'll call Frank was diagnosed as having an 
almost always fatal form of throat cancer and told he had less than a 5 
percent chance of surviving. His weight had dropped from 130 to 98 
pounds. He was extremely weak, could barely swallow his own saliva, 
and was having trouble breathing. Indeed, his doctors had debated 
whether to give him radiation therapy at all, because there was a distinct 
possibility the treatment would only add to his discomfort without 
significantly increasing his chances for survival. They decided to 
proceed anyway. 

Then, to Frank's great good fortune, Dr. 0. Carl Simonton, a radiation 
oncologist and medical director of the Cancer Counseling and Research 
Center in Dallas, Texas, was asked to participate in his treatment 
Simonton suggested that Frank himself could influence the course of his 
own disease. Simonton then taught Frank a number of relaxation and 
mental-imagery techniques he and his colleagues had developed. From 
that point on, three times a day, Frank pictured the radiation he received 
as consisting of millions of tiny bullets of energy bombarding his cells. 
He also visualized his cancer cells as weaker and 


I Sing the Body Holographic 


more confused than his norma) cells, and thus unable to repair the 
damage they suffered. Then he visualized his body's white blood cells, 
the soldiers of the immune system, coming in, swarming over the dead 
and dying cancer cells, and carrying them to his liver and kidneys to be 
flushed out of his body. 

The results were dramatic and far exceeded what usually happened in 
such cases when patients were treated solely with radiation. The 
radiation treatments worked like magic. Frank experienced almost none 
of the negative side effects — damage to skin and mucous mem- 
branes — that normally accompanied such therapy. He regained his lost 
weight and his strength, and in a mere two months all signs of his cancer 
had vanished. Simonton believes Frank's remarkable recovery was due 
in large part to his daily regimen of visualization exercises. 

In a follow-up study, Simonton and his colleagues taught their 
mental-imagery techniques to 159 patients with cancers considered 
medically incurable. The expected survival time for such a patient is 
twelve months. Four years later 63 of the patients were still alive. Of 
those, 14 showed no evidence of disease, the cancers were regressing in 
12, and in 17 the disease was stable. The average survival time of the 
group as a whole was 24.4 months, over twice as long as the national 
norm. 1 

Simonton has since conducted a number of similar studies, all with 
positive results. Despite such promising findings, his work is still 
considered controversial. For instance, critics argue that the individuals 
who participate in Simonton's studies are not "average" patients. Many 
of them have sought Simonton out for the express purpose of learning his 
techniques, and this shows that they already have an extraordinary 
fighting spirit. Nonetheless, many researchers find Simonton's results 
compelling enough to support his work, and Simonton himself has set up 
the Simonton Cancer Center, a successful research and treatment facility 
in Pacific Palisades, California, devoted to teaching imagery techniques 
to patients who are fighting various illnesses. The therapeutic use of 
imagery has also captured the imagination of the public, and a recent 
survey revealed that it was the fourth most frequently used alternative 
treatment for cancer." 

How is it that an image formed in the mind can have an effect on 
something as formidable as an incurable cancer? Not surprisingly the 
holographic theory of the brain can be used to explain this phenomenon 
as well. Psychologist Jeanne Achterberg, director of research and 
rehabilitation science at the University of Texas Health Science Center 



in Dallas, Texas, and one of the scientists who helped develop the 
imagery techniques Simonton uses, believes it is the holographic imag- 
ing capabilities of the brain that provide the key. 

As has been noted, all experiences are ultimately just 
neurophysio-logical processes taking place in the brain. According to 
the holographic model the reason we experience some things, such as 
emotions, as internal realities and others, such as the songs of birds and 
the barking of dogs, as external realities is because that is where the 
brain localizes them when it creates the internal hologram that we 
experience as reality. However, as we have also seen, the brain cannot 
always distinguish between what is "out there" and what it believes to be 
"out there," and that is why amputees sometimes have phantom limb 
sensations. Put another way, in a brain that operates holograph-ically, 
the remembered image of a thing can have as much impact on the senses 
as the thing itself. 

It can also have an equally powerful effect on the body's physiology, a 
state of affairs that has been experienced firsthand by anyone who has 
ever felt their heart race after imagining hugging a loved one. Or anyone 
who has ever felt their paims grow sweaty after conjuring up the 
memory of some unusually frightening experience. At first glance the 
fact that the body cannot always distinguish between an imagined event 
and a real one may seem strange, but when one takes the holographic 
model into account — a model that asserts that all experiences, whether 
real or imagined, are reduced to the same common language of 
holographically organized wave forms — the situation becomes much 
less puzzling. Or as Achterberg puts it, "When images are regarded in 
the holographic manner, their omnipotent influence on physical 
function logically follows. The image, the behavior, and the 
physiological concomitants are a unified aspect of the same phenome- 

Bohm uses his idea of the implicate order, the deeper and nonlocal 
level of existence from which our entire universe springs, to echo the 
sentiment "Every action starts from an intention in the implicate order. 
The imagination is already the creation of the form; it already has the 
intention and the germs of all the movements needed to carry it out And 
it affects the body and so on, so that as creation takes place in that way 
from the subtler levels of the implicate order, it goes through them until 
it manifests in the explicate." 4 In other words, in the implicate order, as 
in the brain itself, imagination and reality are ultimately 
indistinguishable, and it should therefore come as no sur- 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


prise to us that images in the mind can ultimately manifest as realities in 
the physical body. 

Achterberg found that the physiological effects produced through the 
use of imagery are not only powerful, but can also be extremely specific. 
For example, the term white blood cell actually refers to a number of 
different kinds of cell. In one study, Achterberg decided to see if she 
could train individuals to increase the number of only one particular type 
of white blood cell in their body. To do this she taught one group of 
college students how to image a cell known as a neutrophil, the major 
constituent of the white blood cell population. She trained a second 
group to image T-cells, a more specialized kind of white blood cell. At 
the end of the study the group that learned the neutrophil imagery had a 
significant increase in the number of neutrophils in their body, but no 
change in the number of T-cells. The group that learned to image T-cells 
had a significant increase in the number of that kind of cell, but the 
number of neutrophils in their body remained the same. 3 

Achterberg says that belief is also critical to a person's health. As she 
points out, virtually everyone who has had contact with the medical 
world knows at least one story of a patient who was sent home to die, but 
because they "believed" otherwise, they astounded their doctors by 
completely recovering. In her fascinating book Imagery in Healing she 
describes several of her own encounters with such cases. In one, a 
woman was comatose on admission, paralyzed, and diagnosed with a 
massive brain tumor. She underwent surgery to "debulk" her tumor 
(remove as much as is safely possible), but because she was considered 
close to death, she was sent home without receiving either radiation or 

Instead of promptly dying, the woman became stronger by the day. As 
her biofeedback therapist, Achterberg was able to monitor the woman's 
progress, and by the end of sixteen months the woman showed no 
evidence of cancer. Why? Although the woman was intelligent in a 
worldly sense, she was only moderately educated and did not really 
know the meaning of the word tumor — or the death sentence it imparted. 
Hence, she did not believe she was going to die and overcame her cancer 
with the same confidence and determination she'd used to overcome 
every other illness in her life, says Achterberg. When Achterberg saw 
her last, the woman no longer had any traces of paralysis, had thrown 
away her leg braces and her cane, and had even been out dancing a 
couple of times. 6 



Breznitz found that the stress hormone levels in the soldiers' blood 
always reflected their estimates and not the actual distance they had 
marched. In other words, their bodies responded not to reality, but to 
what they were imaging as reality. 

According to Dr. Charles A. Garfield, a former National Aeronautics 
and Space Administration (NASA) researcher and current president of 
the Performance Sciences Institute in Berkeley, California, the Soviets 
have extensively researched the relationship between imagery and 
physical performance. In one study a phalanx of world-class Soviet 
athietes was divided into four groups. The first group spent 100 percent 
of their training time in training. The second spent 75 percent of their 
time training and 25 percent of their time visualizing the exact move- 
ments and accomplishments they wanted to achieve in their sport. The 
third spent 50 percent of their time training and 50 percent visualizing, 
and the fourth spent 25 percent training and 75 percent visualizing. 
Unbelievably, at the 1980 Winter Games in Lake Placid, New York, the 
fourth group showed the greatest improvement in performance, fol- 
lowed by groups three, two, and one, in that order. 11 

Garfield, who has spent hundreds of hours interviewing athletes and 
sports researchers around the world, says that the Soviets have incor- 
porated sophisticated imagery techniques into many of their athletic 
programs and that they believe mental images act as precursors in the 
process of generating neuromuscular impulses. Garfield believes im- 
agery works because movement is recorded holographically in the brain. 
In his book Peak Performance: Mental Training Techniques of the 
World's Greatest Athletes, he states, "These images are holographic and 
function primarily at the subliminal level. The holographic imaging 
mechanism enables you to quickly solve spatial problems such as 
assembling a complex machine, choreographing a dance routine, or 
running visual images of plays through your mind." 12 

Australian psychologist Alan Richardson has obtained similar results 
with basketball players. He took three groups of basketball players and 
tested their ability to make free throws. Then he instructed the first 
group to spend twenty minutes a day practicing free throws. He told the 
second group not to practice, and had the third group spend twenty 
minutes a day visualizing that they were shooting perfect baskets. As 
might be expected, the group that did nothing showed no improvement 
The first group improved 24 percent, but through the power of imagery 
alone, the third group improved an astonishing 23 percent, almost as 
much as the group that practiced. 13 

1 Sing the Body Holographic _ 

The Lack of Division Between Health and Illness 

Physician Larry Dossey believes that imagery is not the only tool the 
holographic mind can use to effect changes in the body. Another is 
simply the recognition of the unbroken wholeness of all things. As 
Dossey observes, we have a tendency to view illness as external to us. 
Disease comes from without and besieges us, upsetting our well-being. 
But if space and time, and all other things in the universe, are truly 
inseparable, then we cannot make a distinction between health and 

How can we put this knowledge to practical use in our lives? When 
we stop seeing illness as something separate and instead view it as part 
of a larger whole, as a milieu of behavior, diet, sleep, exercise patterns, 
and various other relationships with the world at large, we often get 
better, says Dossey. As evidence he calls attention to a study in which 
chronic headache sufferers were asked to keep a diary of the frequency 
and severity of their headaches. Although the record was intended to be 
a first step in preparing the headache sufferers for further treatment, 
most of the subjects found that when they began to keep a diary, their 
headaches disappeared ! M 

In another experiment cited by Dossey, a group of epileptic children 
and their families were videotaped as they interacted with one an 
other. Occasionally, there were emotional outbursts during the ses 
sions, which were often followed by actual seizures. When the children 
were shown the tapes and saw the relationship between these emo 
tional events and their seizures, they became almost seizure-free. 15 
Why'.' By keeping a diary or watching a videotape, the subjects were 
able to see their condition in relationship to the larger pattern of their 
lives. When this happens, illness can no longer be viewed "as an" .' 
intruding disease originating elsewhere, but as part of a process of 
living which can accurately be described as an unbroken whole," says 
Dossey. "When our focus is toward a principle of relatedness and 
oneness, and away from fragmentation and isolation, health en 
sues." 16 "" —J 

Dossey feels the word patient is as misleading as the word particle. 
Instead of being separate and fundamentally isolated biological units, 
we are essentially dynamic processes and patterns that are no more 
analyzable into parts than are electrons. More than this, we are con- 
nected, connected to the forces that create both sickness and health, 



to the beliefs of our society, to the attitudes of our friends, our family, 
and our doctors, and to the images, beliefs, and even the very words we 
use to apprehend the universe. 

In a holographic universe we are also connected to our bodies, and in 
the preceding pages we have seen some of the ways these connections 
manifest themselves. But there are others, perhaps even an infinity of 
others. As Pribram states, "If indeed every part of our body is a 
reflection of the whole, then there must be all kinds of mechanisms to 
control what's going on. Nothing is firm at this point" 17 Given our 
ignorance in the matter, instead of asking how the mind controls the 
body holographic, perhaps a more important question is, What is the 
extent of this control? Are there any limitations on it, and if so, what are 
they? That is the question to which we now turn our attention. 

The Healing Power of Nothing at All 

Another medical phenomenon that provides us with a tantalizing 
glimpse of the control the mind has over the body is the placebo effect. A 
placebo is any medical treatment that has no specific action on the body 
but is given either to humor a patient, or as a control in a double-blind 
experiment, that is, a study in which one group of individuals is given a 
real treatment and another group is given a fake treatment. In such 
experiments neither the researchers nor the individuals being tested 
know which group they are in so that the effects of the real treatment can 
be assessed more accurately. Sugar pills are often used as placebos in 
drug studies. So is saline solution (distilled water with salt in it), 
although placebos need not always be drugs. Many believe that any 
medical benefit derived from crystals, copper bracelets, and other 
nontraditional remedies is also due to the placebo effect. 

Even surgery has been used as a placebo. In the 1 950s, angina pectoris, 
recurrent pain in the chest and left arm due to decreased blood flow to the 
heart, was commonly treated with surgery. Then some resourceful 
doctors decided to conduct an experiment Rather than perform the 
customary surgery, which involved tying off the mammary artery, they 
cut patients open and then simply sewed them back up again. The 
patients who received the sham surgery reported just as much relief as 
the patients who had the full surgery. The full 

1 Sing the Body Holographic 


surgery, as it turned out, was only producing a placebo effect None- 
theless, the success of the sham surgery indicates that somewhere deep 
in all of us we have the ability to control angina pectoris. 

And that is not all. In the last half century the placebo effect has been 
extensively researched in hundreds of different studies around the world. 
We now know that on average 35 percent of all people who receive a 
given placebo will experience a significant effect although this number 
can vary greatly from situation to situation. In addition to angina 
pectoris, conditions that have proved responsive to placebo treatment 
include migraine headaches, allergies, fever, the common cold, acne, 
asthma, warts, various kinds of pain, nausea and seasickness, peptic 
ulcers, psychiatric syndromes such as depression and anxiety, 
rheumatoid and degenerative arthritis, diabetes, radiation sickness, 
Parkinsonism, multiple sclerosis, and cancer. 

Clearly these range from the not so serious to the life threatening, but 
placebo effects on even the mildest conditions may involve physiological 
changes that are near miraculous. Take, for example, the lowly wart. 
Warts are a small tumorous growth on the skin caused by a virus. They 
are also extremely easy to cure through the use of placebos, as is 
evidenced by the nearly endless folk rituals — ritual itself being a kind of 
placebo — that are used by various cultures to get rid of them. Lewis 
Thomas, president emeritus of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center 
in New York, tells of one physician who regularly rid his patients of 
warts simply by painting a harmless purple dye on them. Thomas feels 
that explaining this small miracle by saying it's just the unconscious 
mind at work doesn't begin to do the placebo effect justice. "If my 
unconscious can figure out how to manipulate the mechanisms needed 
for getting around that virus, and for deploying all the various cells in the 
correct order for tissue rejection, then all I have to say is that my 
unconscious is a lot further along than I am," he states. 19 

The effectiveness of a placebo in any given circumstance also varies 
greatly. In nine double-blind studies comparing placebos to aspirin, 
placebos proved to be 54 percent as effective as the actual analgesic. 20 
Prom this one might expect that placebos would be even less effective 
when compared to a much stronger painkiller such as morphine, but this 
is not the case. In six double -blind studies placebos were found to be 56 
percent as effective as morphine in relieving pain! 21 

Why? One factor that can affect the effectiveness of a placebo is the 
method in which it is given. Injections are generally perceived as more 



potent than pills, and hence giving a placebo in an injection can enhance 
its effectiveness. Similarly, capsules are often seen as more effective 
than tablets, and even the size, shape, and color of a pill can play a role. 
In a study designed to determine the suggestive value of a pill's color, 
researchers found that people tend to view yellow or orange pills as 
mood manipulators, either stimulants or depressants. Dark red pills are 
assumed to be sedatives; lavender pills, hallucinogens; and white pills, 
painkillers. 22 

Another factor is the attitude the doctor conveys when he prescribes 
the placebo. Dr. David Sobel, a placebo specialist at Kaiser Hospital, 
California, relates the story of a doctor treating an asthma patient who 
was having an unusually difficult time keeping his bronchial tubes open. 
The doctor ordered a sample of a potent new medicine from a 
pharmaceutical company and gave it to the man. Within minutes the 
man showed spectacular improvement and breathed more easily. How- 
ever, the next time he had an attack, the doctor decided to see what 
would happen if he gave the man a placebo. This time the man com- 
plained that there must be something wrong with the prescription 
because it didn't completely eliminate his breathing difficulty. This 
convinced the doctor that the sample drug was indeed a potent new 
asthma medication — until he received a letter from the pharmaceutical 
company informing him that instead of the new drug, they had acci- 
dentally sent him a placebo.' Apparently it was the doctor's unwitting 
enthusiasm for the first placebo, and not the second, that accounted for 
the discrepancy. 23 

In terras of the holographic model, the man's remarkable response to 
the placebo asthma medication can again be explained by the mind/ 
body's ultimate inability to distinguish between an imagined reality and 
a real one. The man believed he was being given a powerful new asthma 
drug, and this belief had as dramatic a physiological effect on his lungs 
as if he had been given a real drug. Achterberg's warning that the neural 
holograms that impact on our health are varied and multifaceted is also 
underscored by the fact that even something as subtle as the doctor's 
slightly different attitude (and perhaps body language) while 
administering the two placebos was enough to cause one to work and the 
other to fail. It is clear from this that even information received 
subliminally can contribute greatly to the beliefs and mental images that 
impact on our health. One wonders how many drugs have worked (or 
not worked) because of the attitude the doctor conveyed while 
administering them. 

1 Sing the Body Holographic 


Tumors That Melt Like Snowballs on a Hot Stove 

Understanding the role such factors play in a placebo's effectiveness is 
important, for it shows how our ability to control the body holographic is 
molded by our beliefs. Our minds have the power to get rid of warts, to 
clear our bronchial tubes, and to mimic the painkilling ability of 
morphine, but because we are unaware that we possess the power, we 
must be fooled into using it. This might almost be comic if it were not 
for the tragedies that often result from our ignorance of our own power. 

No incident better illustrates this than a now famous case reported by 
psychologist Bruno Klopfer. Klopfer was treating a man named Wright 
who had advanced cancer of the lymph nodes. All standard treatments 
had been exhausted, and Wright appeared to have little time left. His 
neck, armpits, chest, abdomen, and groin were filled with tumors the size 
of oranges, and his spleen and liver were so enlarged that two quarts of 
milky fluid had to be drained out of his chest every day. 

But Wright did not want to die. He had heard about an exciting new 
drug called Krebiozen, and he begged his doctor to let him try it. At first 
his doctor refused because the drug was only being tried on people with 
a life expectancy of at least three months. But Wright was so unrelenting 
in his entreaties, his doctor finally gave in. He gave Wright an injection 
of Krebiozen on Friday, but in his heart of hearts he did not expect 
Wright to last the weekend. Then the doctor went home. 

To his surprise, on the following Monday he found Wright out of bed 
and walking around. Klopfer reported that his tumors had "melted like 
snowballs on a hot stove" and were half their original size. This was a 
far more rapid decrease in size than even the strongest X-ray treatments 
could have accomplished. Ten days after Wright's first Krebiozen 
treatment, he left the hospital and was, as far as his doctors could tell, 
cancer free. When he had entered the hospital he had needed an oxygen 
mask to breathe, but when he left he was well enough to fly his own 
plane at 12,000 feet with no discomfort. 

Wright remained well for about two months, but then articles began to 
appear asserting that Krebiozen actually had no effect on cancer of the 
lymph nodes. Wright, who was rigidly logical and scientific in his 
thinking, became very depressed, suffered a relapse, and was readmitted 
to the hospital. This time his physician decided to try an experi- 



ment. He told Wright that Krebiozen was every bit as effective as it had 
seemed, but that some of the initial supplies of the drug had deteriorated 
during shipping. He explained, however, that he had a new highly 
concentrated version of the drug and could treat Wright with this. Of 
course the physician did not have a new version of the drug and intended 
to inject Wright with plain water. To create the proper atmosphere he 
even went through an elaborate procedure before injecting Wright with 
the placebo. 

Again the results were dramatic. Tumor masses meited, chest fluid 
vanished, and Wright was quickly back on his feet and feeling great. He 
remained symptom-free for another two months, but then the American 
Medical Association announced that a nationwide study of Krebiozen 
had found the drug worthless in the treatment of cancer. This time 
Wright's faith was completely shattered. His cancer blossomed anew 
and he died two days later. 34 

Wright's story is tragic, but it contains a powerful message: When we 
are fortunate enough to bypass our disbelief and tap the healing forces 
within us, we can cause tumors to melt away overnight 

In the case of Krebiozen only one person was involved, but there are 
similar cases involving many more people. Take a chemotherapeutic 
agent called cis-platinum. When ess-platinum first became available it, 
too, was touted as a wonder drug, and 75 percent of the people who 
received it benefited from the treatment. But after the initial wave of 
excitement and the use of cis-platinum became more routine, its rate of 
effectiveness dropped to about 25 to 30 percent. Apparently most of the 
benefit obtained from cis-platinum was due to the placebo effect. 25 

Do Any Drugs Really Work? 

Such incidents raise an important question. If drugs such as Krebiozen 
and cis-platinum work when we believe in them and stop working when 
we stop believing in them, what does this imply about the nature of 
drugs in general? This is a difficult question to answer, but we do have 
some clues. For instance, physician Herbert Benson of Harvard Medical 
School points out that the vast majority of treatments prescribed prior to 
this century, from leeching to consuming lizard's blood, were useless, 
but because of the placebo effect, they were no doubt helpful at least 
some of the time. -6 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


Benson, along with Dr. David P. McCallie, Jr., of Harvard's 
Thorn-dike Laboratory, reviewed studies of various treatments for 
angina pectoris that have been prescribed over the years and discovered 
that although remedies have come and gone, the success rates — even for 
treatments that are now discredited — have always remained high. 27 
From these two observations it is evident that the placebo effect has 
played an important roie in medicine in the past, but does it still play a 
role today? The answer, it seems, is yes. The federal Office of Tech- 
nology Assessment estimates that more than 75 percent of all current 
medical treatments have not been subjected to sufficient scientific 
scrutiny, a figure that suggests that doctors may still be giving placebos 
and not know it (Benson, for one, believes that, at the very least, many 
over-the-counter medications act primarily as placebos). - " 

Given the evidence we have looked at so far, one might almost wonder 
if all drugs are placebos. Clearly the answer is no. Many drugs are 
effective whether we believe in them or not: Vitamin C gets rid of scurvy, 
and insulin makes diabetics better even when they are skeptical. But still 
the issue is not quite as clear-cut as it may seem. Consider the following. 

In a 1962 experiment Drs. Harriet Linton and Robert Langs told test 
subjects they were going to participate in a study of the effects of LSD, 
but then gave them a placebo instead. Nonetheless, half an hour after 
taking the placebo, the subjects began to experience the classic 
symptoms of the actual drug, loss of control, supposed insight into the 
meaning of existence, and so on. These "placebo trips" lasted several 
hours. 29 

A few years later, in 1966, the now infamous Harvard psychologist 
Richard Alpert journeyed to the East to look for holy men who could 
offer him insight into the LSD experience. He found several who were 
willing to sample the drug and, interestingly, received a variety of 
reactions. One pundit told him it was good, but not as good as meditation. 
Another, a Tibetan lama, complained that it only gave him a headache. 

But the reaction that fascinated Alpert most came from a wizened 
little holy man in the foothills of the Himalayas. Because the man was 
over sixty, Alpert's first inclination was to give him a gentle dose of 50 to 
75 micrograms. But the man was much more interested in one of the 305 
microgram pills Alpert had brought with him, a relatively sizable dose. 
Reluctantly, Alpert gave him one of the pills, but still the man was not 
satisfied. With a twinkle in his eye he requested another 



and then another and placed all 9 1 5 micrograms of L SD on his tongue, a 
massive dose by any standard, and swallowed them (in comparison, the 
average dose Grof used in his studies was about 200 micrograms). 

Aghast, Alpert watched intently, expecting the man to start waving 
his arms and whooping like a banshee, but instead he behaved as if 
nothing had happened. He remained that way for the rest of the day, his 
demeanor as serene and unperturbed as it always was, save for the 
twinkling glances he occasionally tossed Alpert. The LSD apparently 
had little or no effect on him. Alpert was so moved by the experience he 
gave up LSD, changed his name to Ram Dass, and converted to 
mysticism. 30 

And so taking a placebo may well produce the same effect as taking 
the real drug, and taking the real drug might produce no effect. This 
topsy-turvy state of affairs has also been demonstrated in experiments 
involving amphetamines. In one study, ten subjects were placed in each 
of two rooms. In the first room, nine were given a stimulating 
amphetamine and the tenth a sleep-producing barbiturate. In the second 
room the situation was reversed. In both instances, the person singled 
out behaved exactly as his companions did. In the first room instead of 
falling asleep the lone barbiturate taker became animated and speedy, 
and in the second room the lone amphetamine taker fell asleep. 31 There 
is also a case on record of a man addicted to the stimulant Ritalin, whose 
addiction is then transferred to a placebo. In other words, the man's 
doctor enabled him to avoid all the usual unpleasantries of Ritalin 
withdrawal by secretly replacing his prescription with sugar pills. 
Unfortunately the man then went on to display an addiction to the 

Such events are not limited to experimental situations. Placebos also 
play a role in our everyday lives. Does caffeine keep you awake at night? 
Research has shown that even an injection of caffeine won't keep 
caffeine-sensitive individuals awake if they believe they are receiving a 
sedative. 33 Has an antibiotic ever helped you get over a cold or sore 
throat? If so, you were experiencing the placebo effect. All colds are 
caused by viruses, as are several types of sore throat, and antibiotics are 
only effective against bacterial infections, not viral infections. Have you 
ever experienced an unpleasant side effect after taking a medication? In 
a study of a tranquilizer called mephenesin, researchers found that 10 to 
20 percent of the test subjects experienced negative side 
effects — including nausea, itchy rash, and heart 

palpitations — regardless of whether they were given the actual drug 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


or a placebo.* Similarly, in a recent study of a new kind of chemo- 
therapy, 30 percent of the individuals in the control group, the group 
given placebos, lost their hair. 35 So if you know someone who is taking 
chemotherapy, tell them to try to be optimistic in their expectations. The 
mind is a powerful thing. 

In addition to offering us a glimpse of this power, placebos also 
support a more holographic approach to understanding the mind/body 
relationship. As health and nutrition columnist Jane Brody observes in 
an article in the New York Times, "The effectiveness of placebos 
provides dramatic support for a 'holistic' view of the human organism, a 
view that is receiving increasing attention in medical research. This 
view holds that the mind and body continually interact and are too 
closely interwoven to be treated as independent entities," 36 

The placebo effect may also be affecting us in far vaster ways than we 
realize, as is evidenced by a recent and extremely puzzling medical 
mystery. If you have watched any television at all in the last year or so, 
you have no doubt seen a blitzkrieg of commercials promoting aspirin's 
ability to decrease the risk of heart attack. There is a good deal of 
convincing evidence to back this up, otherwise television censors, who 
are real sticklers for accuracy when it comes to medical claims in 
commercials, wouldn't allow such copy on the air. This is all well and 
good. The only problem is that aspirin doesn't seem to have the same 
effect on people in England. A six -year study of 5,139 British doctors 
revealed no evidence that aspirin reduces the risk of heart attack. 37 Is 
there a flaw in somebody's research, or is it possible that some kind of 
massive placebo effect is to blame? Whatever the case, don't stop 
believing in the prophylactic benefits of aspirin. It still may save your 

The Health Implications of Multiple Personality 

Another condition that graphically illustrates the mind's power to affect 
the body is Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD). In addition to 
possessing different brain-wave patterns, the subpersonalities of a 
multiple have a strong psychological separation from one another. 

"Of course I am by M means suggesting that all drug side effects are the result of the 
placebo effect. Should you experience a negative reaction to a drug, always consult a 



Each has his own name, age, memories, and abilities. Often each also 
has his own style of handwriting, announced gender, cultural and racial 
background, artistic talents, foreign language fluency, and IQ. 

Even more noteworthy are the biological changes that take place in a 
multiple's body when they switch personalities. Frequently a medical 
condition possessed by one personality will mysteriously vanish when 
another personality takes over. Dr. Bennett Braun of the International 
Society for the Study of Multiple Personality, in Chicago, has 
documented a case in which all of a patient's subpersonafities were 
allergic to orange juice, except one. If the man drank orange juice when 
one of his allergic personalities was in control, he would break out in a 
terrible rash. But if he switched to his nonaliergic personality, the rash 
would instantly start to fade and he could drink orange juice freely. 38 

Dr. Francine Rowland, a Yale psychiatrist who specializes in treating 
multiples, relates an even more striking incident concerning one 
multiple's reaction to a wasp sting. On the occasion in question, the man 
showed up for his scheduled appointment with Rowland with his eye 
completely swollen shut from a wasp sting. Realizing he needed medical 
attention, Howland called an ophthalmologist Unfortunately, the 
soonest the opthalmologist could see the man was an hour later, and 
because the man was in severe pain, Howland decided to try something. 
As it turned out, one of the man's alternates was an "anesthetic 
personality" who felt absolutely no pain. Howland had the anesthetic 
personality take control of the body, and the pain ended. But something 
else also happened. By the time the man arrived at his appointment with 
the ophthalmologist, the swelling was gone and his eye had returned to 
normal. Seeing no need to treat him, the ophthalmologist sent him home. 

After a while, however, the anesthetic personality relinquished control 
of the body, and the man's original personality returned, along with all 
the pain and swelling of the wasp sting. The next day he went back to the 
ophthalmologist to at last be treated. Neither Howland nor her patient 
had told the ophthalmologist that the man was a multiple, and after 
treating him, the ophthalmologist telephoned Howland. "He thought 
time was playing tricks on him." Rowland laughed. "He just wanted to 
make sure that I had actually called him the day before and he had not 
imagined it" 39 

Allergies are not the only thing multiples can switch on and off. If 

1 Sing the Body Holographic 


there was any doubt as to the control the unconscious mind has over drug 
effects, it is banished by the pharmacological wizardry of the multiple. 
By changing personalities, a multiple who is drunk can instantly become 
sober. Different personalities also respond differently to different drugs. 
Braun records a case in which 5 milligrams of diazepam, a tranquilizer, 
sedated one personality, while 100 milligrams had little or no effect on 
another. Often one or several of a multiple's personalities are children, 
and if an adult personality is given a drug and then a child's personality 
takes over, the adult dosage may be too much for the child and result in 
an overdose. It is also difficult to anesthetize some multiples, and there 
are accounts of multiples wakmg up on the operating table after one of 
their "unanesthetizable" subpersonalities has taken over. 

Other conditions that can vary from personality to personality include 
scars, burn marks, cysts, and left- and right-handedness. Visual acuity 
can differ, and some multiples have to carry two or three different pairs 
of eyeglasses to accommodate their alternating personalities. One 
personality can be color-blind and another not, and even eye color can 
change. There are cases of women who have two or three menstrual 
periods each month because each of their subpersonalities has its own 
cycle. Speech pathologist Christy Ludlow has found that the voice 
pattern for each of a multiple's personalities is different, a feat that 
requires such a deep physiological change that even the most 
accomplished actor cannot alter his voice enough to disguise his voice 
pattern. *° One multiple, admitted to a hospital for diabetes, baffled her 
doctors by showing no symptoms when one of her nondiabetic person- 
alities was in control. 41 There are accounts of epilepsy coming and going 
with changes in personality, and psychologist Robert A. Phillips, Jr., 
reports that even tumors can appear and disappear (although he does not 
specify what kind of tumors). 42 

Multiples also tend to heal faster than normal individuals. For ex- 
ample, there are several cases on record of third-degree burns healing 
with extraordinary rapidity. Most eerie of all, at least one researcher — Dr. 
Cornelia Wilbur, the therapist whose pioneering treatment of Sybil 
Dorsett was portrayed in the book Sybil — is convinced that multiples 
don't age as fast as other people. 

How could such things be? At a recent symposium on the multiple 
personality syndrome, a multiple named Cassandra provided a possible 
answer. Cassandra attributes her own rapid healing ability both to 



the visualization techniques she practices and to something she calls 
parallel processing. As she explained, even when her alternate per- 
sonalities are not in control of her body, they are still aware. This 
enables her to "think" on a multitude of different channels at once, to do 
things like work on several different term papers simultaneously, and 
even "sleep" while other personalities prepare her dinner and clean her 

Hence, whereas norma! people only do healing imagery exercises two 
or three times a day, Cassandra does them around the clock. She even 
has a subpersonality named Celese who possesses a thorough 
knowledge of anatomy and physiology, and whose sole function is to 
spend twenty-four hours a day meditating and imaging the body's 
well-being. According to Cassandra, it is this full-time attention to her 
health that gives her an edge over normal people. Other multiples have 
made similar claims. 43 

We are deeply attached to the inevitability of things. If we have bad 
vision, we believe we will have bad vision for life, and if we suffer from 
diabetes, we do not for a moment think our condition might vanish with 
a change in mood or thought. But the phenomenon of multiple 
personality challenges this belief and offers further evidence of just how 
much our psychological states can affect the body's biology. If the 
psyche of an individual with MPD is a kind of multiple image hologram, 
it appears that the body is one as well, and can switch from one 
biological state to another as rapidly as the flutter of a deck of cards. 

The systems of control that must be in place to account for such 
capacities is mind-boggling and makes our ability to will away a wart 
look pale. Allergic reaction to a wasp sting is a complex and 
multi-faceted process and involves the organized activity of antibodies, 
the production of histamine, the dilation and rupture of blood vessels, 
the excessive release of immune substances, and so on. What unknown 
pathways of influence enable the mind of a multiple to freeze all these 
processes in their tracks? Or what allows them to suspend the effects of 
alcohol and other drugs in the blood, or turn diabetes on and off? At the 
moment we don't know and must console ourselves with one simple fact. 
Once a multiple has undergone therapy and in some way becomes 
whole again, he or she can still make these switches at will.'" This 
suggests that somewhere in our psyches we all have the ability to 
control these things. And still this is not all we can do. 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


Pregnancy, Organ Transplants, and 
Tapping the Genetic Level 

As we have seen, simple everyday belief can also have a powerful effect 
on the body. Of course most of us do not have the mental discipline to 
completely control our beliefs (which is why doctors must use placebos 
to fool us into tapping the healing forces within us). To regain that 
control we must first understand the different types of belief that can 
affect us, for these too offer their own unique window on the plasticity 
of the mind/body relationship. 


One type of belief is imposed on us by our society. For example, the 
people of the Trobriand Islands engage freely in sexual relations before 
marriage, but premarital pregnancy is strongly frowned upon. They use 
no form of contraception, and seldom if ever resort to abortion. Yet 
premarital pregnancy is virtually unknown. This suggests that, because 
of their cultural beliefs, the unmarried women are unconsciously 
preventing themselves from getting- pregnant. 4S There is evidence that 
something similar may be going on in our own culture. Almost everyone 
knows of a couple who have tried unsuccessfully for years to have a 
child. They finally adopt, and shortly thereafter the woman gets pregnant. 
Again this suggests that finally having a child enabled the woman and/or 
her husband to overcome some sort of inhibition that was blocking the 
effects of her and/or his fertility. 

The fears we share with the other members of our culture can also 
affect us greatly. In the nineteenth century, tuberculosis killed tens of 
thousands of people, but starting in the 1880s, death rates began to 
plummet. Why? Previous to that decade no one knew what caused TB, 
which gave it an aura of terrifying mystery. But in 1882 Dr. Robert Koch 
made the momentous discovery that TB was caused by a bacterium. 
Once this knowledge reached the general public, death rates fell from 
600 per 100,000 to 200 per 100,000, despite the fact that it would be 
nearly half a century before an effective drug treatment could be 
found. 46 

Fear apparently has been an important factor in the success rates of 
organ transplants as well. In the 1 950s kidney transplants were only a 
tantalizing possibility. Then a doctor in Chicago made what 



seemed to be a successful transplant He published his findings, and soon 
after other successful transplants took place around the world. Then the 
first transplant failed. In fact, the doctor discovered that the kidney had 
actually been rejected from the start. But it did not matter. Once 
transplant recipients believed they could survive, they did, and success 
rates soared beyond all expectations. 47 


Another way belief manifests in our lives is through our attitudes. 
Studies have shown that the attitude an expectant mother has toward her 
baby, and pregnancy in general, has a direct correlation with the 
complications she will experience during childbirth, as well as with the 
medical problems her newborn infant will have after it is born. 4 * Indeed, 
in the past decade an avalanche of studies has poured in demonstrating 
the effect our attitudes have on a host of medical conditions. People who 
score high on tests designed to measure hostility and aggression are 
seven times more likely to die from heart problems than people who 
receive low scores. 49 Married women have stronger immune systems 
than separated or divorced women, and happily married women have 
even stronger immune systems. 60 People with AIDS who display a 
fighting spirit live longer than AIDS-infected individuals who have a 
passive attitude. 51 People with cancer also live longer if they maintain a 
fighting spirit, 52 Pessimists get more colds than optimists. 53 Stress 
lowers the immune response; 54 people who have just lost their spouse 
have an increased incidence of illness and disease, 55 and on and on. 


The types of belief we have examined so far can be viewed largely as 
passive beliefs, beliefs we allow our culture or the normal state of our 
thoughts to impose upon us. Conscious belief in the form of a steely and 
unswerving will can also be used to sculpt and control the body 
holographic. In the 1970s, Jack Schwarz, a Dutch-born author and 
lecturer, astounded researchers in laboratories across the United States 
with his ability to willfully control his body's internal biological 

In studies conducted at the Menninger Foundation, the University of 
California's Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute, and others, 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


Schwarz astonished doctors by sticking mammoth six-inch sailmaker's 
needles completely through his arms without bleeding, without flinching, 
and without producing beta brain waves (the type of brain waves 
normally produced when a person is in pain). Even when the needles 
were removed, Schwara still did not bleed, and the puncture holes closed 
tightly. In addition, Schwarz altered his brain-wave rhythms at will, held 
burning cigarettes against his flesh without harming himself, and even 
carried live coals around in his hands. He claims he acquired these 
abilities when he was in a Nazi concentration camp and had to learn how 
to control pain in order to withstand the terrible beatings he endured. He 
believes anyone can learn voluntary control of their body and thus gain 
responsibility for his or her own health. 55 

Oddly enough, in 1947 another Dutchman demonstrated similar 
abilities. The man's name was Mirin Dajo, and in public performances at 
the Corso Theater in Zurich, he left audiences stunned. In plain view 
Dajo would have an assistant stick a fencing foil completely through his 
body, clearly piercing vital organs but causing Dajo no harm or pain. 
Like Schwarz, when the foil was removed, Dajo did not bleed and only a 
faint red line marked the spot where the foil had entered and exited. 

Dajo's performance proved so nerve-racking to his audiences that 
eventually one spectator suffered a heart attack, and Dajo was legally 
banned from performing in public. However, a Swiss doctor named Hans 
Naegeli-Osjord learned of Dajo's alleged abilities and asked him if he 
would submit to scientific scrutiny. Dajo agreed, and on May 31, 1947, 
he entered the Zurich cantonal hospital. In addition to Dr. 
Naegeli-Osjord, Dr. Werner Brunner, the chief of surgery at the hospital, 
was also present, as were numerous other doctors, students, and 
journalists. Dajo bared his chest and concentrated, and then, in full view 
of the assemblage, he had his assistant plunge the foil through his body. 

As always, no blood flowed and Dajo remained completely at ease. 
But he was the only one smiling. The rest of the crowd had turned to 
stone. By all rights, Dajo's vital organs should have been severely 
damaged, and his seeming good health was almost too much for the 
doctors to bear. Filled with disbelief, they asked Dajo if he would submit 
to an X ray. He agreed and without apparent effort accompanied them up 
the stairs to the X-ray room, the foil still through his abdomen. The X ray 
was taken and the result was undeniable. Dajo was indeed impaled. 
Finally, a full twenty minutes after he had been 



pierced, the foil was removed, leaving only two faint scars. Later, Dajo 
was tested by scientists in Basel, and even let the doctors themselves run 
him through with the foil. Dr. Naegeli-Osjord later related the entire 
case to the German physicist Alfred Stelter, and Stelter reports it in his 
book Psi-Heating. 

Such supernormal feats of control are not limited to the Dutch. In the 
1960s Gilbert Grosvenor, the president of the National Geographic 
Society, his wife, Donna, and a team of Geographic photographers 
visited a village in Ceylon to witness the alleged miracles of a local 
wonderworker named Mohotty. It seems that as a young boy Mohotty 
prayed to a Ceylonese divinity named Kataragama and told the god that 
if he cleared Mohotty's father of a murder charge, he, Mohotty, would 
do yearly penance in Kataragama's honor. Mohotty's father was cleared, 
and true to his word, every year Mohotty did his penance. 

This consisted of walking through fire and hot coals, piercing his 
cheeks with skewers, driving skewers into his arms from shoulder to 
wrist, sinking large hooks deep into his back, and dragging an enormous 
sledge around a courtyard with ropes attached to the hooks. As the 
Grosvenors later reported, the hooks pulled the flesh in Mohotty's back 
quite taut, and again there was no sign of blood. When Mohotty was 
finished and the hooks were removed, there weren't even any traces of 
wounds. The Geographic team photographed this unnerving display and 
published both pictures and an account of the incident in the April 1 966 
issue of National Geographic.™ 

In 1 967 Scientific American published a report about a similar annual 
ritual in India. In that instance a different person was chosen each year 
by the local community, and after a generous amount of ceremony, two 
hooks large enough to hang a side of beef on were buried in the victim's 
back. Ropes that were pulled through the eyes of the hooks were tied to 
the boom of an ox cart, and the victim was then swung in huge ares over 
the fields as a sacramental offering to the fertility gods. When the hooks 
were removed the victim was completely unharmed, there was no blood, 
and literally no sign of any punctures in the flesh itself. 59 


As we have seen, if we are not fortunate enough to have the 
self-mastery of a Dajo or a Mohotty, another way of accessing the 
healing force within us is to bypass the thick armor of doubt and 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


that exists in our conscious minds. Being tricked with a placebo is one 
way of accomplishing this. Hypnosis is another. Like a surgeon reach- 
ing in and altering the condition of an internal organ, a skilled hypno- 
therapist can reach into our psyche and help us change the most 
important type of belief of all, our unconscious beliefs. 

Numerous studies have demonstrated irrefutably that under hypnosis 
a person can influence processes usually considered unconscious. For 
instance, like a multiple, deeply hypnotized persons can control allergic 
reactions, blood flow patterns, and nearsightedness. In addition, they 
can control heart rate, pain, body temperature, and even will away some 
kinds of birthmarks. Hypnosis can also be used to accomplish 
something that, in its own way, is every bit as remarkable as suffering 
no injury after a foil has been stuck through one's abdomen. 

That something involves a horribly disfiguring hereditary condition 
known as Brock's disease. Victims of Brocq's disease develop a thick, 
horny covering over their skin that resembles the scales of a reptile. The 
skin can become so hardened and rigid that even the slightest movement 
will cause it to crack and bleed. Many of the so-called alligator-skinned 
people in circus sideshows were actually individuals with Brocq's 
disease, and because of the risk of infection, victims of Brocq's disease 
used to have relatively short lifespans. 

Brocq's disease was incurable until 1951 when a sixteen-year-old boy 
with an advanced case of the affliction was referred as a last resort to a 
hypnotherapist named A. A. Mason at the Queen Victoria Hospital in 
London. Mason discovered that the boy was a good hypnotic subject and 
could easily be put into a deep state of trance. While the boy was in 
trance, Mason told him that his Brocq's disease was healing and would 
soon be gone. Five days later the scaly layer covering the boy's left arm 
fell off, revealing soft, healthy flesh beneath. By the end often days the 
arm was completely normal. Mason and the boy continued to work on 
different body areas until all of the scaly skin was gone. The boy 
remained symptom-free for at least five years, at which point Mason lost 
touch with him. 00 

This is extraordinary because Brocq's disease is a genetic condition, 
and getting rid of it involves more than just controlling autonomic 
processes such as blood flow patterns and various cells of the immune 
system. It means tapping into the masterplan, our DN A programming 
itself. So, it would appear that when we access the right strata of our 
beliefs, our minds can override even our genetic makeup. 



FIGURE 11. A 1962 X ray showing the degree to which Vittorio Michelli's hip bone had 
disintegrated as a result of his malignant sarcoma. So littie bone was left that the ball of his 
upper leg was free-floating in a mass of soft tissue, rendered as gray mist in the X ray. 

FIGURE 12. After a series of baths in the spring at Lourdes, Michelli experienced a 
miraculous healing. His hip bone completely regenerated over the course of several 
months, a feat currently considered impossible by medical science. This 1965 X ray shows 
his miraculously restored hip joint. [Source: Michel-Marie Salmon, The Extraordinary 
Cure of Vittorio Michelli. Used by permission] 

I Sing the Body Holographic 



Perhaps the most powerful types of belief of all are those we express 
through spiritual faith. In 1962 a man named Vittorio Michelli was 
admitted to the Military Hospital of Verona, Italy, with a large cancerous 
tumor on his left hip (see fig. 1 1). So dire was his prognosis that he was 
sent home without treatment, and within ten months his hip had 
completely disintegrated, leaving the bone of his upper leg floating in 
nothing more than a mass of soft tissue. He was, quite literally, falling 
apart As a last resort he traveled to Lourdes and had himself bathed in 
the spring (by this time he was in a plaster cast, and his movements were 
quite restricted). Immediately on entering the water he had a sensation of 
heat moving through his body. After the bath his appetite returned and he 
felt renewed energy. He had several more baths and then returned home. 

Over the course of the next month he felt such an increasing sense of 
well-being he insisted his doctors X-ray him again. They discovered his 
tumor was smaller. They were so intrigued they documented every step 
in this improvement. It was a good thing because after Michelli's tumor 
disappeared, his bone began to regenerate, and the medical community 
generally views this as an impossibility. Within two months he was up 
and walking again, and over the course of the next several years his bone 
completely reconstructed itself (see fig. 12). 

A dossier on Michelli's case was sent to the Vatican's Medical Com- 
mission, an international panel of doctors set up to investigate such 
matters, and after examining the evidence the commission decided 
Michelli had indeed experienced a miracle. As the commission stated in 
its official report, "A remarkable reconstruction of the iliac bone and 
cavity has taken place. The X rays made in 1964,1965,1968 and 1969 
confirm categorically and without doubt that an unforeseen and even 
overwhelming bone reconstruction has taken place of a type unknown in 
the annals of world medicine. " * 61 

Was Michelli's healing a miracle in the sense that it violated any of the 
known laws of physics? Although the jury remains out on this question, 
there seems no clear-cut reason to believe any laws were 

'In a truly stunning example of synchronicity, while I was in the middle of writing these 
very words a letter armed in the mail informing me that a friend who lives in Kauai, Hawaii, 
and whose hip had disintegrated due to cancer has also experienced an "inexplicable" and 
complete regeneration of her bone. The tools she employed to effect her recovery were 
chemotherapy, extensive meditation, and imagery exercises. The story of her healing has 
been reported in the Hawaiian newspapers. 



violated. Rather, Michelli's healing may simply be due to natural pro- 
cesses we do not yet understand. Given the phenomenal range of healing 
capacities we have looked at so far, it is clear there are many pathways 
of interaction between the mind and body that we do not yet understand. 

If Michelli's healing was attributable to an undiscovered natural 
process, we might better ask, Why is the regeneration of bone so rare 
and what triggered it in Michelli's case? It may be that bone regenera- 
tion is rare because achieving it requires the accessing of very deep 
levels of the psyche, levels usually not reached through the normal 
activities of consciousness. This appears to be why hypnosis is needed 
to bring about a remission of Brocq's disease. As for what triggered 
Michelli's healing, given the role belief plays in so many examples of 
mind/body plasticity it is certainly a primary suspect. Could it be that 
through his faith in the healing power of Lourdes, Michelli somehow, 
either consciously or serendipitously, effected his own cure? 

There is strong evidence that belief, not divine intervention, is the 
prime mover in at least some so-called miraculous occurrences. Recall 
that Mohotty attained his supernormal self-control by praying to 
Kata-ragama, and unless we are willing to accept the existence of 
Katara-gama, Mohotty *s abilities seem better explained by his deep and 
abiding belief that he was divinely protected. The same seems to be true 
of many miracles produced by Christian wonder-workers and saints. 

One Christian miracle that appears to be generated by the power of the 
mind is stigmata. Most church scholars agree that St. Francis of Assisi 
was the first person to manifest spontaneously the wounds of the 
crucifixion, but since his death there have been literally hundreds of 
other stigmatists. Although no two ascetics exhibit the stigmata in quite 
the same way, all have one thing in common. From St. Francis on, all 
have had wounds on their hands and feet that represent where Christ was 
nailed to the cross. This is not what one would expect if stigmata were 
God-given. As parapsychologist D. Scott Rogo, a member of the 
graduate faculty at John F. Kennedy University in Orinda, California, 
points out, it was Roman custom to place the nails through the wrists, 
and skeletal remains from the time of Christ bear this out Nails inserted 
through the hands cannot support the weight of a body hanging on a 

Why did St. Francis and all the other stigmatists who came after him 
believe the nail holes passed through the hands? Because that is the way 
the wounds have been depicted by artists since the eighth cen- 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


tury. That the position and even size and shape of stigmata have been 
influenced by art is especially apparent in the case of an Italian 
stigma-tist named Gemma Galgani, who died in 1903. Gemma's wounds 
precisely mirrored the stigmata on her own favorite crucifix. 

Another researcher who believed stigmata are self-induced was 
Herbert Thurston, an English priest who wrote several volumes on 
miracles. In his tour de force The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism, 
published posthumously in 1952, he listed several reasons why he 
thought stigmata were a product of autosuggestion. The size, shape, and 
location of the wounds varies from stigmatist to stigmatist, an 
inconsistency that indicates they are not derived from a common source, 
i.e., the actual wounds of Christ. A comparison of the visions 
experienced by various stigmatists also shows little consistency, sug- 
gesting that they are not reenactments of the historical crucifixion, but 
are instead products of the stigmatists' own minds. And perhaps most 
significant of all, a surprisingly large percentage of stigmatists also 
suffered from hysteria, a fact Thurston interpreted as a further indication 
that stigmata are the side effect of a volatile and abnormally emotional 
psyche, and not necessarily the product of an enlightened one. 63 In view 
of such evidence it is small wonder that even some of the more liberal 
members of the Catholic leadership believe stigmata are the product of 
"mystical contemplation," that is, that they are created by the mind 
during periods of intense meditation. 

If stigmata are products of autosuggestion, the range of control the 
mind has over the body holographic must be expanded even further. 
Like Mohotty's wounds, stigmata can also heal with disconcerting speed. 
The almost limitless plasticity of the body is further evidenced in the 
ability of some stigmatists to grow nail-like protuberances in the middle 
of their wounds. Again, St. Francis was the first to display this 
phenomenon. According to Thomas of Celano, an eyewitness to St. 
Francis's stigmata and also his biographer: "His hands and feet seemed 
pierced in the midst by nails. These marks were round on the inner side 
of the hands and elongated on the outer side, and certain small pieces of 
flesh were seen like the ends of nails bent and driven back, projecting 
from the rest of the flesh. " 64 

Another contemporary of St. Francis's, St Bonaventura, also wit- 
nessed the saint's stigmata and said that the nails were so clearly defined 
one could slip a finger under them and into the wounds. Although St. 
Francis's nails appeared to be composed of blackened and hardened 
flesh, they possessed another naillike quality. According to 



Thomas of Celano, if a iiaiJ were pressed on one side, it instantly 
projected on the other side, just as it would if it were a real nail being slid 
back and forth through the middle of the hand! 

Therese Neumann, the well-known Bavarian stigmatist who died in 
1962, also had such naillike protuberances. Like St. Francis's they were 
apparently formed of hardened skin. They were thoroughly examined by 
several doctors and found to be structures that passed completely 
through her hands and feet. Unlike St. Francis's wounds, which were 
open continuously, Neumann's opened only periodically, and when they 
stopped bleeding, a soft, membranelike tissue quickly grew over them. 

Other stigmatists have displayed similarly profound alterations in 
their bodies. Padre Pio, the famous Italian stigmatist who died in 1968, 
had stigmata wounds that passed completely through his hands. A 
wound in his side was so deep that doctors who examined it were afraid 
to measure it for fear of damaging his internal organs. Venerable 
Giovanna Maria Solimani, an eighteenth-century Italian stigmatist, had 
wounds in her hands deep enough to stick a key into. As with all 
stigmatists' wounds, bers never became decayed, infected, or even 
inflamed. And another eighteenth-century stigmatist, St. Veronica Gi- 
uliani, an abbess at a convent in Citta di Castello in Umbria, Italy, had a 
large wound in her side that would open and close on command. 

Images Projected Outside the Brain 

The holographic model has aroused the interest of researchers in the 
Soviet Union, and two Soviet psychologists, Dr. Alexander P. Dubrov 
and Dr. Veniamin N. Pushkin, have written extensively on the idea. 
They believe that the frequency processing capabilities of the brain do 
not in and of themselves prove the holographic nature of the images and 
thoughts in the human mind. They have, however, suggested what might 
constitute such proof. Dubrov and Pushkin believe that if an example 
could be found where the brain projected an image outside of itself, the 
holographic nature of the mind would be convincingly demonstrated. Or 
to use their own words, "Records of ejection of psychophysical 
structures outside the brain would provide direct evidence of brain 
holograms." 65 

In fact, St. Veronica Giuliani seems to supply such evidence. During 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


the last years of her life she became convinced that the images of the 
Passion — a crown of thorns, three nails, a cross, and a sword — had 
become emblazoned on her heart. She drew pictures of these and even 
noted where they were located. After she died an autopsy revealed that 
the symbols were indeed impressed on her heart exactly as she had 
depicted them. The two doctors who performed the autopsy signed 
sworn statements attesting to their finding. 66 

Other stigmatists have had similar experiences. St. Teresa of Avila had 
a vision of an angel piercing her heart with a sword, and after she died a 
deep fissure was found in her heart. Her heart, with the miraculous sword 
wound still clearly visible, is now on display as a relic in Alba de Tormes, 
Spain. 67 A nineteenth-century French stigmatist named Marie- Julie 
Jahenny kept seeing the image of a flower in her mind, and eventually a 
picture of the flower appeared on her breast. It remained there twenty 
years. 6 " Nor are such abilities limited to stigmatists. In 1913 a 
twelve-year-old girl from the village of Bussus-Bus-Suel, near Abbeville, 
France, made headlines when it was discovered that she could 
consciously command images, such as pictures of dogs and horses, to 
appear on her arms, legs, and shoulders. She could also produce words, 
and when someone asked her a question the answer would instantly 
appear on her skin. 69 

Surely such demonstrations are examples of the ejection of psycho- 
physical structures outside the brain. In fact, in a way stigmata them- 
selves, especially those in which the flesh has formed into nail-like 
protrusions, are examples of the brain projecting images outside itself 
and impressing them in the soft clay of the body holographic. Dr. 
Michael Grosso, a philosopher at Jersey City State College who has 
written extensively on the subject of miracles, has also arrived at this 
conclusion. Grosso, who traveled to Italy to study Padre Pio's stigmata 
firsthand, states, "One of the categories in my attempt to analyze Padre 
Pio is to say that he had an ability to symbolically transform physical 
reality. In other words, the level of consciousness he was operating at 
enabled him to transform physical reality in the light of certain symbolic 
ideas. For example, he identified with the wounds of the crucifixion and 
his body became permeable to those psychie symbols, gradually 
assuming their form."™ 

So it appears that through the use of images, the brain can tell the body 
what to do, including telling it to make more images. Images making 
images. Two mirrors reflecting each other infinitely. Such is the nature 
of the mind/body relationship in a holographic universe. 



Laws Both Known and Unknown 

At the beginning of this chapter, I said that instead of examining the 
various mechanisms the mind uses to control the body, the chapter 
would be devoted primarily to exploring the range of this control. In 
doing so I did not mean to deny or diminish the importance of such 
mechanisms. They are crucial to our understanding of the mind/ body 
relationship, and new discoveries in this area seem to appear every day. 

For example, at a recent conference on psychoneuroimmunology — a 
new science that studies the way the mind (psycho), the nervous system 
(neuro), and the immune system (immunology) interact — Candace Pert, 
chief of brain biochemistry at the National Institute of Mental Health, 
announced that immune cells have neuropeptide receptors. 
Neuropeptides are molecules the brain uses to communicate, the brain's 
telegrams, if you will. There was a time when it was believed that 
neuropeptides could only be found in the brain. But the existence of 
receptors (telegram receivers) on the cells in our immune system 
implies that the immune system is not separate from but is an extension 
of the brain. Neuropeptides have also been found in various other parts 
of the body, leading Pert to admit that she can no longer tell where the 
brain leaves off and the body begins. 71 

I have excluded such particulars, not only because 1 felt examining 
the extent to which the mind can shape and control the body was more 
relevant to the discussion at hand, but also because the biological 
processes responsible for mind/body interactions are too vast a subject 
for this book. At the beginning of the section on miracles I said there 
was no clear-cut reason to believe Michelli's bone regeneration could 
not be explained by our current understanding of physics. This is less 
true of stigmata. It also appears to be very much not true of various 
paranormal phenomena reported by credible individuals throughout 
history, and in recent times by various biologists, physicists, and other 

In this chapter we have looked at astounding things the mind can do 
that, although not fully understood, do not seem to violate any of the 
known laws of physics. In the next chapter we will look at some of the 
things the mind can do that cannot be explained by our current scientific 
understandings. As we will see, the holographic idea may shed light in 
these areas as well. Venturing into these territories will 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


occasionally involve treading on what might at first seem to be shaky 
ground and examining phenomena even more dizzying and incredible 
than Mohotty's rapidly healing wounds and the images on St. Veronica 
Giuliani's heart. But again we will find that, despite their daunting 
nature, science is also beginning to make inroads into these territories. 

Acupuncture Microsystems and the 
Little Man in the Ear 

Before closing, one last piece of evidence of the body's holographic 
nature deserves to be mentioned. The ancient Chinese art of acupuncture 
is based on the idea that every organ and bone in the body is connected 
to specific points on the body's surface. By activating these acupuncture 
points, with either needles or some other form of stimulation, it is 
believed that diseases and imbalances affecting the parts of the body 
connected to the points can be alleviated and even cured. There are over 
a thousand acupuncture points organized in imaginary lines called 
meridians on the body's surface. Although still controversial, 
acupuncture is gaining acceptance in the medical community and has 
even been used successfully to treat chronic back pain in racehorses. 

In 1957 a French physician and acupuncturist named Paul Nogier 
published a book called Treatise of Auriculotkerapy, in which he 
announced his discovery that in addition to the major acupuncture 
system, there are two smaller acupuncture systems on both ears. He 
dubbed these acupuncture microsystems and noted that when one played 
a kind of connect-the-dots game with them, they formed an anatomical 
map of a miniature human inverted like a fetus (see fig. 13). 
Unbeknownst to Nogier, the Chinese had discovered the "little man in 
the ear" nearly 4,000 years earlier, but a map of the Chinese ear system 
wasn't published until after Nogier had already laid claim to the idea. 

The little man in the ear is not just a charming aside in the history of 
acupuncture. Dr. Terry Oleson, a psycho biologist at the Pain Man- 
agement Clinic at the University of California at Los Angeles School of 
Medicine, has discovered that the ear microsystem can be used to 
diagnose accurately what's going on in the body. For instance, Oleson 



has discovered that increased electrical activity in one of the acupuncture 
points in the ear generally indicates a pathological condition (either past 
or present) in the corresponding area of the body. In one study, forty 
patients were examined to determine areas of their body where they 
experienced chronic pain. Following the examination, each 

Foot (E} 

Kim* (C) 
Foot (C) 

Kidney {E) 

Renital Organs 


Urinary Bladder 


Kldntyl (C) 

Pancreas, Rail Bladder 

Sun 11 and Laroe intestines 








Pituitary Eland 
Endocrine Homones 

Tbalanus (E) 

Cerebral Corte* (E] 

Bart of Head 
Loner Jaw, TK) krta 

C ■ Chinese Ear Acupuncture Systoi 
E » European AiiHculotherapy Systen 

Figure 13. The Little Man in the Ear. Acupuncturists have found that the acu- 
puncture points in the ear form the outline of a miniature human being. Dr. Terry 
Oleson, a psychobiologist at UCLA's School of Medicine, believes it is because the 
body is a hologram and each of its portions contains an image of the whole. 
[Copyright Dr. Terry Oleson, UCLA School of Medicine. Used by permission] 

1 Sing the Body Holographic 


patient was draped in a sheet to conceal any visible problems. Then an 
acupuncturist with no knowledge of the results examined only their ears. 
When the results were tallied it was discovered that the ear examinations 
were in agreement with the established medical diagnoses 75.2 percent 
of the time. 72 

Ear examinations can also reveal problems with the bones and internal 
organs. Once when Oleson was out boating with an acquaintance he 
noticed an abnormally flaky patch of skin in one of the man's ears. From 
his research Oleson knew the spot corresponded to the heart, and he 
suggested to the man that he might want to get his heart checked. The 
man went to his doctor the next day and discovered he had a cardiac 
problem which required immediate open-heart surgery. 73 

Oleson also uses electrical stimulation of the acupuncture points in the 
ear to treat chronic pain, weight problems, hearing loss, and virtually all 
kinds of addiction. In one study of 14 narcotic-addicted individuals, 
Oleson and his colleagues used ear acupuncture to eliminate the drug 
requirements of 12 of them in an average of 5 days and with only 
minimal withdrawal symptoms/ 4 Indeed, ear acupuncture has proved so 
successful in bringing about rapid narcotic detoxification that clinics in 
both Los Angeles and New York are now using the technique to treat 
street addicts. 

Why would the acupuncture points in the ear be aligned in the shape of 
a miniature human? Oleson believes it is because of the holographic 
nature of the mind and body. Just as every portion of a hologram 
contains the image of the whole, every portion of the body may also 
contain the image of the whole. "The ear holograph is, logically, con- 
nected to the brain holograph which itself is connected to the whole 
body," he states. " The way we use the ear to affect the rest of the body is 
by working through the brain holograph." 75 

Oleson believes there are probably acupuncture microsystems in other 
parts of the body as well. Dr. Ralph Alan Dale, the director of the 
Acupuncture Education Center in North Miami Beach, Florida, agrees. 
After spending the last two decades tracking down clinical and research 
data from China, Japan, and Germany, he has accumulated evidence of 
eighteen different micro acupuncture holograms in the body, including 
ones in the hands, feet, arms, neck, tongue, and even the gums. Like 
Oleson, Dale feels these microsystems are "holographic reiterations of 
the gross anatomy," and believes there are still other such systems 
waiting to be discovered. In a notion reminiscent of Bohm's assertion 
that every electron in some way contains the 



cosmos, Dale hypothesizes that every finger, and even every cell, may 
contain its own acupuncture microsystem. 76 

Richard Leviton, a contributing editor at East West magazine, who 
has written about the holographic implications of acupuncture mi- 
crosystems, thinks that alternative medical techniques — such as re- 
flexology, a type of massage therapy that involves accessing all points 
of the body through stimulation of the feet, and iridology, a diagnostic 
technique that involves examining' the iris of the eye in order to deter- 
mine the condition of the body — may also be indications of the body's 
holographic nature. Leviton concedes that neither field has been ex- 
perimentally vindicated {studies of iridology, in particular, have pro- 
duced extremely conflicting results) but feels the holographic idea 
offers a way of understanding them if their legitimacy is established. 

Leviton thinks there may even be something to palmistry. By this he 
does not mean the type of hand reading practiced by fortune-tellers who 
sit in glass storefronts and beckon people in, but the 4,500-year-old 
Indian version of the science. He bases this suggestion on his own 
profound encounter with an Indian hand reader living in Montreal who 
possessed a doctorate in the subject from Agra University, India. "Lhe 
holographic paradigm provides palmistry's more esoteric and contro- 
versial claims a context for validation," says Leviton. 77 

It is difficult to assess the type of palmistry practiced by Leviton's 
Indian hand reader in the absence of double-blind studies, but science is 
beginning to accept that at least some information about our body ts 
contained in the lines and whorls of our hand. Herman Weinreb, a 
neurologist at New York University, has discovered that a fingerprint 
pattern called an ulnar loop occurs more frequently in Alzheimer's 

Figure 14. Neurologists have found that Alzheimer's patients have a more than 
average chance of having a distinctive fingerprint pattern known as an ulnar 
loop. At least ten other common genetic disabilities are also associated with 
various patterns in the hand. Such findings may provide evidence of the holo- 
graphic model's assertion that every portron of the body contains information 
about the whole. [Redrawn by the author from original art in Medicine magazine] 

I Sing the Body Holographic 


patients than in nonsufferers (see fig. 14). In a study of 50 Alzheimer's 
patients and 50 normal individuals, 72 percent of the Alzheimer's group 
had the pattern on at least 8 of their fingertips, compared to only 26 
percent in the control group. Of those with ulnar loops on all 10 
fingertips, 14 were Alzheimer's sufferers, but only 4 members of the 
control group had the pattern. 78 

It is now known that 10 common genetic disabilities, including 
Down's syndrome, are also associated with various patterns in the hand. 
Doctors in West Germany are now using this information to analyze 
parents' hand prints and help determine whether expectant mothers 
should undergo amniocentesis, a potentially dangerous genetic 
screening procedure in which a needle is inserted into the womb to draw 
off amniotic fluid for laboratory testing. 

Researchers at West Germany's Institute of Dermatoglyphks in 
Hamburg have even developed a computer system that uses an 
opto-electric scanner to take a digitized "photo" of a patient's hand. It 
then compares the hand to the 10,000 other prints in its memory, scans it 
for the nearly 50 distinctive patterns now known to be associated with 
various hereditary disabilities, and quickly calculates the patient's risk 
factors. 78 So perhaps we should not be so quick to dismiss palmistry out 
of hand. Lhe lines and whorls in our palms may contain more about our 
whole self than we realize. 

Harnessing the Powers of the Holographic Brain 

Lhroughout this chapter two broad messages come through loud and 
clear. According to the holographic model, the mind/body ultimately 
cannot distinguish the difference between the neural holograms the 
brain uses to experience reality and the ones it conjures up while 
imagining reality. Both have a dramatic effect on the human organism, 
an effect so powerful that it can modulate the immune system, duplicate 
and/or negate the effects of potent drugs, heal wounds with amazing 
rapidity, melt tumors, override our genetic programming, and reshape 
our living flesh in ways that almost defy belief. Lhis then is the first 
message: that each of us possesses the ability, at least at some level, to 
influence our health and control our physical form in ways that are 
nothing short of dazzling. We are all potential wonderworkers, dormant 
yogis, and it is clear from the evidence presented 




in the preceding pages that it would behoove us both as individuals and as 
a species to devote a good deal more effort into exploring and harnessing 
these talents. 

The second message is that elements that go into the making of these 
neural holograms are many and subtle. They include the images upon 
which we meditate, our hopes and fears, the attitudes of our doctors, our 
unconscious prejudices, our individual and cultural beliefs, and our faith 
in things both spiritual and technological. More than just facts, these are 
important clues, signposts that point toward those things that we must 
become aware of and acquire mastery over if we are to learn how to 
unleash and manipulate these talents. There are, no doubt, other factors 
involved, other influences that shape and circumscribe these abilities, for 
one thing should now be obvious. In a holographic universe, a universe 
in which a slight change in attitude can mean the difference between life 
and death, in which things are so subtly interconnected that a dream can 
call forth the inexplicable appearance of a scarab beetle, and the factors 
responsible for an illness can also evoke a certain pattern in the lines and 
whorls of the hand, we have reason to suspect that each effect has 
multitudinous causes. Each linkage is the starting point of a dozen more, 
for in the words of Walt Whitman, "A vast similitude interlocks ail." 

A Pocketful of Miracles 

Miracles happen, not in opposition to Nature, but in 
opposition to what we know of Nature. 

— St. Augustine 

Every year in September and May a huge crowd gathers at the Duomo 
San Gennaro, the principal cathedral of Naples, to witness a miracle. The 
miracle involves a small viai containing a brown crusty substance 
alleged to be the biood of San Gennaro, or St. Januarius, who was 
beheaded by the Roman emperor Diocletian in A.D. 305. According to 
legend, after the saint was martyred a serving woman collected some of 
his blood as a reJic. No one knows precisely what happened after that, 
save that the blood didn't turn up again until the end of the thirteenth 
century when it was ensconced in a silver reliquary in the cathedral. 

The miracle is that twice yearly, when the crowd shouts at the vial, the 
brown crusty substance changes into a bubbling, bright red liquid. There 
is little doubt that the liquid is real blood. In 1 902 a group of scientists 
from the University of Naples made a spectroscopic analysis of the 
liquid by passing a beam of light through it, verifying that it was blood. 
Unfortunately, because the reliquary containing the blood is so old and 
fragile, the church will not allow it to be cracked open 




so that other tests can be done, and so the phenomenon has never been 
thoroughly studied. 

But there is further evidence that the transformation is a more than 
ordinary event. Occasionally throughout history (the first written ac- 
count of the public performance of the miracle dates back to 1389) when 
the vial is brought out, the blood refuses to liquefy. Although rare, this is 
considered a very bad omen by the citizens of Naples. In the past, the 
failure of the miracle has directly preceded the eruption of Vesuvius and 
the Napoleonic invasion of Naples. More recently, in 1976 and 1978, it 
presaged the worst earthquake in Italian history and the election of a 
communist city government in Naples, respectively. 

Is the liquefaction of San Gennaro's blood a miracle? It appears to be, 
at least in the sense that it seems impossible to explain by known 
scientific laws. Is the liquefaction caused by San Gennaro himself? My 
own feeling is that its more likely cause is the intense devotion and 
belief of the people witnessing the miracle. I say this because nearly all 
of the miracles performed by saints and wonder-workers of the world's 
great religions have also been duplicated by psychics. This suggests that, 
as with stigmata, miracles are produced by forces lying deep in the 
human mind, forces that are latent in all of us. Herbert Thurston, the 
priest who wrote The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism, himself was 
aware of this similarity and was reluctant to attribute any miracle to a 
truly supernatural cause {as opposed to a psychic or paranormal cause). 
Another piece of evidence supportive of this idea is that many 
stigmatists, including Padre Pio and Therese Neumann, were also 
renowned for their psychic abilities. 

One psychic ability that appears to play a role in miracles is psycho- 
kinesis or PK. Since the miracle of San Gennaro involves a physical 
alteration of matter, PK is certainly a likely suspect. Rogo believes PK is 
also responsible for some of the more dramatic aspects of stigmata. He 
feels that it is well within the normal biological capabilities of the body 
to cause small blood vessels under the skin to break and produce 
superficial bleeding, but only PK can account for the rapid appearance of 
large wounds. 1 Whether this is true or not remains to be seen, but PK is 
clearly a factor in some of the phenomena that accompany stigmata. 
When blood flowed from the wounds in Therese Neumann's feet, it 
always flowed toward her toes — exactly as it would have flowed from 
Christ's wounds when he was on the cross — regardless of how her feet 
were positioned. This meant that when she was sitting upright in bed, the 
blood actually flowed upward and counter to the force of 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


gravity. This was observed by numerous witnesses, including many U. S. 
servicemen stationed in Germany after the war who visited Neumann to 
witness her miraculous abilities. Gravity-defying flows of blood have 
been reported in other cases of stigmata as well. 

Such events leave us agog because our current worldview does not 
provide us with a context with which to understand PK. Bohm believes 
viewing the universe as a holomovement does provide us with a context. 
To explain what he means he asks us to consider the following situation. 
Imagine you are walking down a street late one night and a shadow 
suddenly looms up out of nowhere. Your first thought might be that the 
shadow is an assailant and you are in danger. The information contained 
in this thought will in turn give rise to a range of imagined activities, 
such as running, being hurt, and fighting. The presence of these 
imagined activities in your mind, however, is not a purely "mental" 
process, for they are inseparable from a host of related biological 
processes, such as excitation of nerves, rapid heart beat, release of 
adrenaline and other hormones, tensing of the muscles, and so on. 
Conversely, if your first thought is that the shadow is just a shadow, a 
different set of mental and biological responses will follow. Moreover, a 
little reflection will reveal that we react both mentally and biologically 
to everything we experience. 

According to Bohm, the important point to be gleaned from this is that 
consciousness is not the only thing that can respond to meaning. The 
body can also respond, and this reveals that meaning is simultaneously 
both mental and physical in nature. This is odd, for we normally think of 
meaning as something that can only have an active effect on subjective 
reality, on the thoughts inside our heads, not something that can 
engender a response in the physical world of things and objects. 
Meaning "can thus serve as the link or 'bridge' between these two sides 
of reality," Bohm states. "This link is indivisible in the sense that 
information contained in thought, which we feel to be on the 'mental' 
side, is at the same time a neurophysiological, chemical, and physical 
activity, which is clearly what is meant by this thought on the 'material' 

Bohm feels that examples of objectively active meaning can be found 
in other physical processes. One is the functioning of a computer chip. A 
computer chip contains information, and the meaning of the information 
is active in the sense that it determines how electrical currents flow 
through the computer. Another is the behavior of subatomic particles. 
The orthodox view in physics is that quantum waves 



act mechanically on a particle, controlling its movement in much the 
same way that the waves of the ocean might control a Ping-Pong ball 
floating on its surface. But Bohm does not feel that this view can explain, 
for example, the coordinated dance of electrons in a plasma any more 
than the wave motion of water could explain a similarly 
well-choreographed movement of Ping-Pong balls if such a movement 
were discovered on the ocean's surface. He believes the relationship 
between particle and quantum wave is more like a ship on automatic 
pilot guided by radar waves. A quantum wave does not push an electron 
about any more than a radar wave pushes a ship. Rather, it provides the 
electron with information about its environment which the electron then 
uses to maneuver on its own. 

In other words, Bohm believes that an electron is not only mindiike, 
but is a highly complex entity, a far cry from the standard view that an 
electron is a simple, structureless point. The active use of information by 
electrons, and indeed by all subatomic particles, indicates that the ability 
to respond to meaning is a characteristic not only of consciousness but 
of all matter. It is this intrinsic commonality, says Bohm, that offers a 
possible explanation for PK. He states, "On this basis, psychokinesis 
could arise if the mental processes of one or more people were focused 
on meanings that were in harmony with those guiding the basic 
processes of the material systems in which this psychokinesis was to be 
brought about'" 1 

It is important to note that this kind of psychokinesis would not be due 
to a causal process, that is, a cause-and-effect relationship involving any 
of the known forces in physics. Instead, it would be the result of a kind 
of nonlocal "resonance of meanings," or a kind of nonlocal interaction 
similar to, but not the same as, the nonlocal interconnection that allows a 
pair of twin photons to manifest the same angle of polarization which we 
saw in chapter 2 (for technical reasons Bohm believes mere quantum 
nonlocality cannot account for either PK or telepathy, and only a deeper 
form of nonlocality, a kind of "super" nonlocality, would offer such an 

The Gremlin in the Machine 

Another researcher whose ideas about PK are similar to Bohm's, but 
who has taken them one step further, is Robert G. Jahn, a professor 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


of aerospace sciences and dean emeritus of the School of Engineering 
and Applied Science at Princeton University. Jahn's involvement in the 
study of PK happened quite by accident. A former consultant for both 
NASA and the Department of Defense, his original field of interest was 
deep spaee propulsion. In fact, he is the author of Physics of Electric 
Propulsion, the leading textbook in the field, and didn't even believe in 
the paranormal when a student first approached him and asked him to 
oversee a PK experiment she wanted to do as an independent study 
project. Jahn reluctantly agreed, and the results were so provocative they 
inspired him to found the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research 
(PEAR) lab in 1979. Since then PEAR researchers have not only 
produced compelling evidence of the existence of PK, but have gathered 
more data on the subject than anyone else in the country. 

In one series of experiments Jahn and his associate, clinical psychol- 
ogist Brenda Dunne, employed a device called a random event generator, 
or REG, By relying on an unpredictable natural process such as 
radioactive decay, a REG is able to produce a string of random binary 
numbers. Such a string might look something like this: 1,2, 1, 2, 2, 1, 1, 
2, 1, 1, 1, 2, 1. In other words, a REG is a kind of automatic coin-flipper 
capable of producing an enormous number of coin flips in a very short 
time. As everyone knows, if you flip a perfectly weighted coin 1 ,000 
times, the odds are you will get a 50/50 split between heads and tails. In 
reality, out of any 1,000 such flips, the split may vary a little in one 
direction or the other, but the greater the number of flips, the closer to 
50/50 the split will become. 

What Jahn and Dunne did was have volunteers sit in front of the REG 
and concentrate on having it produce an abnormally large number of 
either heads or tails. Over the course of literally hundreds of thousands 
of trials they discovered that, through concentration alone, the 
volunteers did indeed have a small but statistically significant effect on 
the REG's output. They discovered two other things as well. The ability 
to produce PK effects was not limited to a few gifted individuals but was 
present in the majority of volunteers they tested. This suggests that most 
of us possess some degree of PK. They also discovered that different 
volunteers produced different and consistently distinctive results, results 
that were so idiosyncratic that Jahn and Dunne started calling them 
" signatures. " 

In another series of experiments Jahn and Dunne employed a 
pinball-like device that allows 9,000 three-quarter-inch marbles to cir- 



culate around 330 nylon pegs and distribute themselves into 19 collect- 
ing bins at the bottom. The device is contained in a shallow vertical 
frame ten feet high and six feet wide with a clear glass front so that 
volunteers can see the marbles as they fall and collect, in the bins. 
Normally, more balis fall in the center bins than in the outer ones, and 
the overall distribution looks like a bell-shaped curve. 

As with the REG, Jahn and Dunne had volunteers sit in front of the 
machine and try to make more balls land in the outer bins than in the 
center ones. Again, over the course of a large number of runs, the 
operators were able to create a small but measurable shift in where the 
balls landed. In the REG experiments the volunteers only exerted a PK 
effect on microscopic processes, the decay of a radioactive substance, 
but the pinball experiments revealed that test subjects could use PK to 
influence objects in the everyday world as well. What's more, the 
"signatures" of individuals who had participated in the REG 
experiments surfaced again in the pinball experiments, suggesting that 
the PK abilities of any given individual remain the same from 
experiment to experiment, but vary from individual to individual just as 
other talents vary. Jahn and Dunne state, "While small segments of these 
results might reasonably be discounted as falling too close to chance 
behavior to justify revision of prevailing scientific tenets, taken in 
concert the entire ensemble establishes an incontrovertible aberration of 
substantial proportions." 6 

Jahn and Dunne think their findings may explain the propensity some 
individuals seem to have for jinxing machinery and causing equipment 
to malfunction. One such individual was physicist Wolfgang Pauli, 
whose talents in this area are so legendary that physicists have jokingly 
dubbed it the "Pauli effect." It is said that Pauli's mere presence in a 
laboratory would cause a glass apparatus to explode, or a sensitive 
measuring device to crack in half. In one particularly famous incident a 
physicist wrote Pauli to say that at least he couldn't blame Pauli for the 
recent and mysterious disintegration of a complicated piece of 
equipment since Pauli had not been present, only to find that Pauli had 
been passing by the laboratory in a train at the precise moment of the 
mishap! Jahn and Dunne think the famous "Gremlin effect," the 
tendency of carefully tested pieces of equipment to undergo 
inexplicable malfunctions at the most absurdly inopportune moments, 
often reported by pilots, aircrew, and military operators, may also be an 
example of unconscious PK activity. 

If our minds can reach out and alter the movement of a cascade of 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


marbles or the operation of a machine, what strange alchemy might 
account for such an ability? Jahn and Dunne believe that since all known 
physical processes possess a wave/particle duality, it is not unreasonable 
to assume that consciousness does as well. When it is partielelike, 
consciousness would appear to be localized in our heads, but in its 
wavelike aspect, consciousness, like all wave phenomena, could also 
produce remote influence effects. They believe one of these remote 
influence effects is PK. 

But Jahn and Dunne do not stop here. They believe that reality is itself 
the result of the interface between the waveu'ke aspects of 
consciousness and the wave patterns of matter. However, like Bohm, 
they do not believe that consciousness or the material world can be 
productively represented in isolation, or even that PK can be thought of 
as the transmission of some kind of force. "The message may be more 
subtle than that," says Jahn. "It may be that such concepts are simply 
unviable, that we cannot talk profitably about an abstract environment 
or an abstract consciousness. The only thing we can experience is the 
interpenetration of the two in some way." 7 

If PK cannot be thought of as the transmission of some kind of force, 
what terminology might better sum up the interaction of mind and matter? 
In thinking that is again similar to Bohm's, Jahn and Dunne propose that 
PK actually involves an exchange of information between consciousness 
and physical reality, an exchange that should be thought of less as a flow 
between the mental and the material, and more as a resonance between 
the two. The importance of resonance was even sensed and commented 
on by the volunteers in the PK experiments, in that the most frequently 
mentioned factor associated with a successful performance was the 
attainment of a feeling of "resonance" with the machine. One volunteer 
described the feeling as "a state of immersion in the process which leads 
to a loss of awareness of myself. I don't feel any direct control over the 
device, more like a marginal influence when I'm in resonance with the 
machine. It's like being in a canoe; when it goes where I want, I flow 
with it. When it doesn't I try to break the flow and give it a chance to get 
back m resonance with me. 1 ' 8 

Jahn and Dunne's ideas are similar to Bohm's in several other key 
ways. Like Bohm, they believe that the concepts we use to describe 
reality — electron, wavelength, consciousness, time, frequency — are 
useful only as "information-organizing categories" and possess no 
independent status. They also believe that all theories, including their 



own, are only metaphors. Although they do not identify themselves with 
the holographic model (and their theory does in fact differ from Bohm's 
thinking in several significant ways), they do recognize the overlap. "To 
the extent that we're talking about a rather basic reliance on wave 
mechanical behavior, there is some commonality between what we're 
postulating and the holographic idea," says Jahn. "It gives to 
consciousness the capacity to function in a wave mechanical sense and 
thereby to avail itself, one way or another, of all of space and time." 9 

Dunne agrees: "In some sense the holographic model could be per- 
ceived as addressing the mechanism whereby the consciousness in- 
teracts with that wave mechanical, aboriginal, sensible muchness, and 
somehow manages to convert it into usable information. In another 
sense, if you imagine that the individual consciousness has its own 
characteristic wave patterns, you could view it — metaphorically, of 
course — as the laser of a particular frequency that intersects with a 
specific pattern in the cosmic hologram." 10 

As might be expected, Jahn and Dunne's work has been greeted with 
considerable resistance by the scientific orthodox community, but it is 
gaining acceptance in some quarters. A good deal of PEAR's funding 
comes from the McDonnell Foundation, created by James S. McDonnell 
III, of the McDonnell Douglas Corporation, and the New York Times 
Magazine recently devoted an article to Jahn and Dunne's work. Jahn 
and Dunne themselves remain undaunted by the fact that they are 
devoting so much time and effort to exploring the parameters of a 
phenomenon considered nonexistent by most other scientists. As Jahn 
states, "My sense of the importance of this topic is much higher than 
anything else I've ever worked on." 11 

Psychokinesis on a Grander Scale 

So far, PK effects produced in the lab have been limited to relatively 
small objects, but the evidence suggests that some individuals at least 
can use PK to bring about even greater changes in the physical world. 
Biologist Lyal! Watson, author of the bestselling book Supernature and 
a scientist who has studied paranormal events all over the world, 
encountered one such individual while visiting the Philippines. The man 
was one of the so-called Philippine psychic healers, but instead of 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


touching a patient, all he did was hold his hand about ten inches over the 
person's body, point at his or her skin, and an incision would appear 
instantaneously. Watson not only witnessed several displays of the man's 
psych ok inetic surgical skills, but once, when the man made a broader 
sweep with his finger than usual, Watson received an incision on the 
back of his own hand. He bears the scar to this day." 

There is evidence that PK abilities can also be used to heal bones. 
Several examples of such healings have been reported by Dr. Rex 
Gardner, a physician at Sunderland District General Hospital in England. 
One interesting aspect of a 1983 article in the British Medical Journal is 
that Gardner, an avid investigator of miracles, presents contemporary 
miraculous healings side by side with examples of virtually identical 
healings collected by seventh-century English historian and theologian 
the Venerable Bede. 

The present-day healing involved a group of Lutheran nuns living in 
Darmstadt, Germany. The nuns were building a chapel when one of the 
sisters broke through a freshly cemented floor and fell onto a wooden 
beam below. She was rushed to the hospital where X rays revealed that 
she had a compound pelvic fracture. Instead of relying on standard 
medical techniques, the nuns held an all-night prayer vigil. Despite the 
doctors' insistence that the sister should remain in traction for many 
weeks, the nuns took her home two days later and continued to pray and 
perform a laying on of hands. To their surprise, immediately following 
the laying on of hands, the sister stood up from her bed, free of the 
excruciating pain of the fracture and apparently healed. It took her only 
two weeks to achieve a full recovery, whereupon she returned to the 
hospital and presented herself to her astonished doctor. 1 " 

Although Gardner does not try to account for this or any of the other 
healings he discusses in his article, PK seems a likely explanation. Given 
that the natural healing of a fracture is a lengthy process, and even the 
miraculous regeneration of Michelli's pelvis took several months, it is 
suggested that perhaps the unconscious PK abilities of the nuns 
performing the laying on of hands accomplished the task. 

Gardner describes a similar healing that occurred in the seventh 
Century during the building of the church at Hexham, England, and 
involving St. Wilfrid, then the bishop of Hexham. During the construc- 
tion of the church a mason named Bothelm fell from a great height, 
breaking both his arms and legs. As he lay dying, Wilfrid prayed over 
him and asked the other workmen to join him. They did, "the breath 



of life returned" to Bothelm, and he healed rapidly. Since the healing 
apparently did not take place until St. Wilfred asked the other workmen 
to join him, one wonders if St. Wilfred was the catalyst, or again if it was 
the combined unconscious PK of the entire assemblage? 

Dr. William Tufts Brigham, the curator of the Bishop Museum in 
Honolulu and a noted botanist who devoted much of his private life to 
investigating the paranormal, recorded an incident in which a broken 
bone was instantaneously healed by a native Hawaiian shaman, or 
kahuna. The incident was witnessed by a friend of Brigham's named J. 
A. K. Combs. Combs's grandmother-in-law was considered one of the 
most powerful women kahunas in the islands, and once, while attending 
a party at the woman's home, Combs observed her abilities firsthand. 

On the occasion in question, one of the guests slipped and fell in the 
beach sand, breaking his leg so severely that the bone ends pressed 
visibly out against the skin. Recognizing the seriousness of the break, 
Combs recommended that the man be taken to a hospital immediately, 
but the elderly kahuna would hear none of it Kneeling beside the man, 
she straightened his leg and pushed on the area where the fractured 
bones pressed out against his skin. After praying and meditating for 
several minutes she stood up and announced that the healing was 
finished. The man rose wonderingly to his feet, took a step, and then 
another. He was completely healed and his leg showed no indication of 
the break in any way. 14 

Mass Psychokinesis in Eighteenth-Century France 

Such incidents notwithstanding, one of the most astounding manifes- 
tations of psychokinesis, and one of the most remarkable displays of 
miraculous events ever recorded, took place in Paris in the first half of 
the eighteenth century. The events centered around a puritanical sect of 
Dutch-influenced Catholics known as the Jansenists, and were 
precipitated by the death of a saintly and revered Jansenist deacon 
named Francois de Paris. Although few people living today have even 
heard of the Jansenist miracles, they were one of the most talked about 
events in Europe for the better part of a century. 

To understand fully the Jansenist miracles, it is necessary to know a 
little about the historical events that preceded Francois de Paris's 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


death. Jansenism was founded in the early seventeenth century, and 
from the start it was at odds with both the Roman Catholic Church and 
the French monarchy. Many of the beliefs diverged sharply with stan- 
dard church doctrine but it was a popular movement and quickly gained 
followers among the French populace. Most damning of all, it was 
viewed by both the papacy and King Louis XV, a devout Catholic, as 
Protestantism only masquerading as Catholicism. As a result, both the 
church and the king were constantly maneuvering to undermine the 
movement's power. One obstacle to these maneuverings, and one of the 
factors that contributed to the movement's popularity, was that Jansenist 
leaders seemed especially skilled at performing miraculous healings. 
Nonetheless, the church and the monarchy persevered, causing fierce 
debates to rage throughout France. It was on May 1, 1727, at the height 
of this power struggle, that Francois de Paris died and was interred in the 
parish cemetery of Saint-Medard, Paris. 

Because of the abbe's saintly reputation, worshipers began to gather at 
his tomb, and from the beginning a host of miraculous healings were 
reported. The aiiments thus cured included cancerous tumors, paralysis, 
deafness, arthritis, rheumatism, ulcerous sores, persistent fevers, 
prolonged hemorrhaging, and blindness. But this was not all. The 
mourners also started to experience strange involuntary spasms or 
convulsions and to undergo the most amazing contortions of their limbs. 
These seizures quickly proved contagious, spreading like a brush fire 
until the streets were packed with men, women, and children, all 
twisting and writhing as if caught up in a surreal enchantment. 

It was while they were in this fitful and trancelike state that the 
"convulsionaires," as they have come to be called, displayed the most 
phenomenal of their talents. One was the ability to endure without harm 
an almost unimaginable variety of physical tortures. These in* eluded 
severe beatings, blows from both heavy and sharp objects, and 
strangulation — all with no sign of injury, or even the slightest trace of 
wounds or bruises. 

What makes these miraculous events so unique is that they were 
witnessed by literally thousands of observers. The frenzied gatherings 
around Abbe Paris's tomb were by no means short-lived. The cemetery 
and the streets surrounding it were crowded day and night for years, and 
even two decades later miracles were still being reported (to give some 
idea of the enormity of the phenomena, in 1733 it was noted in the 
public records that over 3,000 volunteers were 



needed simply to assist the convulsionaires and make sure, for example, 
that the female participants did not become immodestly exposed during 
their seizures). As a result, the supernormal abilities of the 
convulsionaires became an international cause celebre, and thousands 
flocked to see them, including individuals from all social strata and 
officials from every educational, religious, and governmental institution 
imaginable; numerous accounts, both official and unofficial, of the 
miracles witnessed are recorded in the documents of the time. 

Moreover, many of the witnesses, such as the investigators from the 
Roman Catholic Church, had a vested interest in refuting the Jansenist 
miracles, but they still went away confirming them (the Roman Catholic 
Church later remedied this embarrassing state of affairs by conceding 
that the miracles existed but were the work of the devil, hence proving 
that the Jansenists were depraved). 

One investigator, a member of the Paris Parliament named 
Louis-Basile Carre de Montgeron, witnessed enough miracles to fill four 
thick volumes on the subject, which he published in 1737 under the title 
La Verite des Miracles. In the work he provides numerous examples of 
the convulsionaries' apparent invulnerability to torture. In one instance a 
twenty-year-old convulsion aire named Jeanne Maulet leaned against a 
stone wall while a volunteer from the crowd, "a very strong man," 
delivered one hundred blows to her stomach with a thirty -pound 
hammer (the convulsionaires themselves asked to be tortured because 
they said it relieved the excruciating pain of the convulsions). To test the 
force of the blows, Montgeron himself then took the hammer and tried it 
on the stone wall against which the girl had leaned. He wrote, "At the 
twenty -fifth blow the stone upon which I struck, which had been shaken 
by the preceding efforts, suddenly became loose and fell on the other 
side of the wall, making an aperture more than half a foot in size." 10 

Montgeron describes another instance in which a convulsionaire bent 
back into an arc so that her lower back was supported by "the sharp point 
of a peg." She then asked that a fifty -pound stone attached to a rope be 
hoisted to "an extreme height" and allowed to fall with all its weight on 
her stomach. The stone was hoisted up and allowed to fall again and 
again, but the woman seemed completely unaffected by iL She 
effortlessly maintained her awkward position, suffered no pain or harm, 
and walked away from the ordeal without even so much as a mark on the 
flesh of her back. Montgeron noted that while the ordeal was in progress 
she kept crying out, "Strike harder, harder!" 16 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


In fact, it appears that nothing could harm the convulsionaires. They 
could not be hurt by the blows of metal rods, chains, or timbers. The 
strongest men could not choke them. Some were crucified and afterward 
showed no trace of wounds. 17 Most mind-boggling of ail, they could not 
even be cut or punctured with knives, swords, or hatchets! Montgeron 
cites an incident in which the sharpened point of an iron drill was held 
against the stomach of a convulsionaire and then pounded so violently 
with a hammer that it seemed " as if it would penetrate through to the 
spine and rupture all the entrails." But it didn't, and the convulsionaire 
maintained an "expression of perfect rapture," crying, "Oh, that does me 
good! Courage, brother; strike twice as hard, if you can!" 18 

Invulnerability was not the only talent the Jansenists displayed during 
their seizures. Some became clairvoyant and were able to "discern 
hidden things. " Others could read even when their eyes were closed and 
tightly bandaged, and instances of levitation were reported. One of the 
levitators, an abbe named Bescherand from Montpellier, was so 
"forcibly lifted into the air" during his convulsions that even when 
witnesses tried to hold him down they could not succeed in keeping him 
from rising up off of the ground. 19 

Although we have all but forgotten about the Jansenist miracles today, 
they were far from ignored by the intelligentsia of the time. The niece of 
the mathematician and philosopher Pascal succeeded in having a severe 
ulcer in her eye vanish within hours as the result of a Jansenist miracle. 
When King Louis XV tried unsuccessfully to stop the convulsionaires by 
closing the cemetery of Saint-Medard, Voltaire quipped, "God was 
forbidden, by order of the King, to work any miracles there." And in his 
Philosophical Essays the Scottish philosopher David Hume wrote, 
" There surely never was so great a number of miracles ascribed to one 
person as those which were lately said to have been wrought in France 
upon the tomb of Abbe Paris. Many of the miracles were immediately 
proved upon the spot, before judges of unquestioned credit and 
distinction, in a learned age, and on the most eminent theatre that is now 
in the world. " 

How are we to explain the miracles produced by the convulsionaires? 
Although Bohm is willing to consider the possibility of PK and other 
paranormal phenomena, he prefers not to speculate about specific events 
such as the supernormal abilities of the Jansenists. But once again, if we 
take the testimony of so many witnesses seriously, unless we are willing 
to concede that God favored the Jansenist Catho- 



lies over the Roman, PK seems the likely explanation. That some kind of 
psychic functioning was involved is strongly suggested by the ap- 
pearance of other psychic abilities, such as clairvoyance, during the 
seizures. In addition, we have already looked at a number of examples 
where intense faith and hysteria have triggered the deeper forces of the 
mind, and these too were present in ample portions. In fact, instead of 
being produced by one individual, the psyehokinetic effects may have 
been created by the combined fervor and belief of all those present, and 
this might account for the unusual vigor of the manifestations. This idea 
is not new. In the 1920s the great Harvard psychologist William 
McDougall also suggested that religious miracles might be the result of 
the collective psychic powers of large numbers of worshipers. 

PK would explain many of the convulsionaire's seeming invul- 
nerabilities. In the case of Jeanne Maulet it could be argued that she 
unconsciously used PK to block the effect of the hammer blows. If the 
convulsionaires were unconsciously using PK to take control of chains, 
timbers, and knives, and stop them in their tracks at the precise moment 
of impact, it would also explain why these objects left no marks or 
bruises. Similarly, when individuals tried to strangle the Jansenists, 
perhaps their hands were held in place by PK and although they thought 
they were squeezing flesh, they were really only flexing in the 

Reprogramming the Cosmic Motion Picture Projector 

PK does not explain every aspect of the convulsionaires' invulnerability, 
however. There is the problem of inertia — the tendency of an object in 
motion to stay in motion — to consider. When a fifty -pound stone or a 
piece of timber comes crashing down, it carries with it a lot of energy, 
and when it is stopped in its tracks, the energy has to go somewhere. For 
example, if a person in a suit of armor is struck by a thirty -pound 
hammer, although the metal of the armor may deflect the blow, the 
person is still considerably shaken. In the case of Jeanne Maulet it 
appears that the energy somehow bypassed her body and was transferred 
to the wall behind her, for as Montgeron noted, the stone was " shaken by 
the efforts." But in the case of the woman who was arched and had the 
fifty -pound stone dropped on her abdomen, the 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


matter is less clear. One wonders why she wasn't driven into the ground 
like a croquet hoop, or why, when they were struck with timbers, the 
convulsionaires were not knocked off their feet? Where did the 
deflected energy go? 

Again, the holographic view of reality provides a possible answer. As 
we have seen, Bohm believes that consciousness and matter are just 
different aspects of the same fundamental something, a something that 
has its origins in the implicate order. Some researchers believe this 
suggests that the consciousness may be able to do much more than make 
a few psyehokinetic changes in the material world. For example, Grof 
believes that if the implicate and explicate orders are an accurate 
description of reality, "it is conceivable that certain unusual states of 
consciousness could mediate direct experience of, and intervention in, 
the implicate order. It would thus be possible to modify phenomena in 
the phenomenal world by influencing their generative matrix." 20 Put 
another way, in addition to psychokinetically moving objects around, 
the mind may also be able to reach down and reprogram the cosmic 
motion picture projector that created those objects in the first place. 
Thus, not only could the conventionally recognized rules of nature, such 
as inertia, be completely bypassed, but the mind could alter and reshape 
the material world in ways far more dramatic than even psychokinesis 

That this or some other theory must be true is evidenced in another 
supernormal ability displayed by various individuals throughout history: 
invulnerability to fire. In his book The Physical Phenomena of 
Mysticism, Thurston gives numerous examples of saints who possessed 
this ability, one of the most famous being St. Francis of Paula. Not only 
could St. Francis of Paula hold burning embers in his hands without 
being harmed, but at his canonization hearings in 1519 eight 
eyewitnesses testified that they had seen him walk unharmed through the 
roaring flames of a furnace to repair one of the furnace's broken walls. 

The account brings to mind the Old Testament story of Shadrach, 
Meshach, and Abednego. After capturing Jerusalem, King Nebuchad- 
nezzar ordered everyone to worship a statue of himself. Shadrach, 
Meshach, and Abednego refused, so Nebuchadnezzar ordered them 
thrown into a furnace so "exceeding hot" that the flames even burned up 
the men who threw them in. However, because of their faith, they 
survived the fire unscathed, and came out with their hair unsinged, their 
clothing unharmed, and not even the smell of fire upon them. It 



seems that challenges to faith, such as the one King Louis XV tried to 
impose on the Jansenists, have engendered miracles in more than one 

Although the kahunas of Hawaii do not walk through roaring furnaces, 
there are reports that they can stroll across hot lava without being 
harmed. Brigham told of meeting three kahunas who promised to 
perform the feat for him, and of following them on a lengthy trek to a 
lava flow near the erupting Kilauea. They chose a 1 50-foot-wide lava 
flow that had cooled enough to support their weight, but was so hot that 
patches of incandescence still coursed through its surface. As Brigham 
watched, the kahunas took off their sandals and started to recite the 
lengthy prayers necessary to protect them as they strolled out onto the 
barely hardened molten rock. 

As it turned out, the kahunas had told Brigham earlier that they could 
confer their fire immunity on htm if he wanted to join them, and he had 
bravely agreed. But as he faced the baking heat of the lava he had second 
and even third thoughts. "The upshot of the matter was that I sat tight 
and refused to take off my boots," Brigham wrote in his account of the 
incident. After they finished invoking the gods, the oldest kahuna 
scampered out onto the lava and crossed the 150 feet without harm. 
Impressed, but still adamant about not going, Brigham stood up to watch 
the next kahuna, only to be given a shove that forced him to break into a 
run to keep from falling face first onto the incandescent rock. 

And run Brigham did. When he reached higher ground on the other 
side he discovered that one of his boots had burned off and his socks 
were on fire. But, miraculously, his feet were completely unharmed. The 
kahunas had also suffered no harm and were rolling in laughter at 
Brigham's shock. "I laughed too," wrote Brigham. "I was never so 
relieved in my life as I was to find that I was safe. There is little more 
that I can tell of this experience. I had a sensation of intense heat on my 
face and body, but almost no sensation in my feet." 111 

The convulsionaires also occasionally displayed complete immunity 
to fire. The two most famous of these "human salamanders" — in the 
middle ages the term salamander referred to a mythological lizard 
believed to live in fire — were Marie Sonnet and Gabrielle Moler. On one 
occasion, and tn the presence of numerous witnesses, including 
Mont-geron, Sonnet stretched herself on two chairs over a blazing fire 
and remained there for half an hour. Neither she nor her clothing showed 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


any ill effects. In another instance she sat with her feet in a brazier full of 
burning coals. As with Brigham, her shoes and stockings burned off, but 
her feet were unharmed." 

Gabrielle Moler's exploits were even more dumbfounding. In addition 
to being impervious to the thrusts of swords and blows delivered by a 
shovel, she could stick her head into a roaring hearth fire and hold it 
there without suffering any injury. Eyewitnesses report that afterward 
her clothing was so hot it could barely be touched, yet her hair, eyelashes, 
and eyebrows were never so much as singed. 23 No doubt she was great 
fun at parties. 

Actually the Jansenists were not the first convulsionary movement in 
France. In the late 1600s, when King Louis XIV tried to purge the 
country of the unabashedly Protestant Huguenots, a group of Huguenot 
resistors in the valley of the Cevennes and known as the Cami-sards 
displayed similar abilities. In an official report sent to Rome, one of the 
persecutors, a prior named Abbe du Chayla, complained that no matter 
what he did, he could not succeed in harming the Camisards. When he 
ordered them shot, the musket balls would be found flattened between 
their clothing and their skin. When he closed their hands upon burning 
coals, they were not harmed, and when he wrapped them head to toe in 
cotton soaked with oil and set them on fire, they did not burn. 24 

As if this weren't enough, Claris, the Camisard leader, ordered that a 
pyre be built and then climbed to the top of it to deliver an ecstatic 
speech. In the presence of six hundred witnesses he ordered the pyre be 
set on fire and continued to rant as the flames rose above his head. After 
the pyre was completely consumed, Claris remained, unharmed and with 
no mark of the fire on his hair or clothing. The head of the French troops 
sent to subdue the Camisards, a colonel named Jean Cavalier, was later 
exiled to England where he wrote a book on the event in 1 707 entitled A 
Cry from the Deserr As for Abbe du Chayla, he was eventually 
murdered by the Camisards during a retaliatory raid. Unlike some of 
them, he possessed no special invulnerability.- 6 

Literally hundreds of credible accounts of fire immunity exist It is 
reported that when Bernadette of Lourdes was in ecstasy she was also 
impervious to fire. According to witnesses, on one occasion her hand 
dropped so close to a burning candle while she was in trance that the 
flames licked around her fingers. One of the individuals present was Dr. 
Dozous, the municipal physician of Lourdes. Being of quick mind, 



Dozous timed the event and noted that it was a full ten minutes before 
she came out of trance and removed her hand. He iater wrote, "I saw it 
with my own eyes. But I swear, if anyone had tried to make me believe 
such a story I would have laughed him to scorn.'* 27 

On September 7,1871, the New York Herald reported that Nathan 
Coker, an elderly Negro blacksmith living in Easton, Maryland, could 
handle red-hot metal without being harmed. In the presence of a com- 
mittee that included several doctors, he heated an iron shovel until it was 
incandescent and then held it against the soles of his feet until it was 
cool. He also licked the edge of the red-hot shovel and poured melted 
lead shot in his mouth, allowing it to run over his teeth and gums until it 
solidified. After each of these feats the doctors examined him and found 
no trace of injury. 3 " 

While on a hunting trip in 1927 in the Tennessee mountains, K. R. 
Wissen, a New York physician, encountered a twelve -year-old boy who 
was similarly impervious. Wissen watched the boy handle red-hot irons 
out of a fireplace with impunity. The boy told Wissen he had discovered 
his ability by accident when he picked up a red-hot horseshoe in his 
uncle's blacksmith shop. 29 The pit of flaming embers the Grosvenors 
watched Mohotty walk through was twenty-feet long and measured 
1328 degrees Fahrenheit on the National Geographic team's 
thermometers. In the May 1959 issue of the Atlantic Monthly, Dr. 
Leonard Feinberg of the University of Illinois reports witnessing 
another Ceylonese fire -walking ritual during which the natives carried 
red-hot iron pots on their heads without being harmed. In an article in 
Psychiatric Quarterly, psychiatrist Berthold Schwarz reports watching 
Appalachian Pentecostals hold their hands in an acetylene flame 
without being harmed, 30 and so on, and so on. 

The Laws of Physics as Habits and Realities 
Both Potential and Real 

Just as it is hard to imagine where the deflected energy goes in some of 
the examples of PK we have looked at, it is equally difficult to 
understand where the energy of a red-hot iron pot goes while the pot is 
resting flat against the hair and flesh of a Ceylonese native's head. 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


But if consciousness can mediate directly in the implicate order, it 
becomes a more tractable problem. Again, rather than being due to some 
undiscovered energy or law of physics (such as some kind of insulating 
force field) that operates within the framework of reality, it would result 
from activity on an even more fundamental level and involve the 
processes that create both the physical universe and the laws of physics 
in the first place. 

Looked at another way, the ability of consciousness to shift from one 
entire reality to another suggests that the usually inviolate rule ths.tfire 
burns human fiesh may only be one program in the cosmic computer, 
but a program that has been repeated so often it has become one of 
nature's habits. As has been mentioned, according to the holographic 
idea, matter is also a kind of habit and is constantly born anew out of the 
implicate, just as the shape of a fountain is created anew out of the 
constant flow of water that gives it form. Peat humorously refers to the 
repetitious nature of this process as one of the universe's neuroses. 
"When you have a neurosis you tend to repeat the same pattern in your 
life, or do the same action, as if there's a memory built up and the thing is 
stuck with that," he says. "I tend to think things like chairs and tables are 
like that also. They're a sort of material neurosis, a repetition. But there 
is something subtler going on, a constant enfolding and unfolding. In 
this sense chairs and tables are just habits in this flux, but the Mux is the 
reality, even if we tend only to see the habit." 31 

Indeed, given that the universe and the laws of physics that govern it 
are also products of this flux, then they, too, must be viewed as habits. 
Clearly they are habits that are deeply ingrained in the holo-movement, 
but supernormal talents such as immunity to fire indicate that, despite 
their seeming constancy, at least some of the rules that govern reality 
can be suspended. This means the laws of physics are not set in stone, 
but are more like Shainberg's vortices, whirlpools of such vast inertial 
power that they are as fixed in the holomovement as our own habits and 
deeply held convictions are fixed in our thoughts. 

Grof s proposal that altered states of consciousness may be required in 
order to make such changes in the implicate is aiso attested to by the 
frequency with which fire immunity is associated with heightened faith 
and religious zeal. The pattern that began to take shape in the last 
chapter continues, and its message becomes increasingly 



clear — the deeper and more emotionally charged our beliefs, the greater 
the changes; we can make in both our bodies and reality itself. 

At this point we might ask, if consciousness can make such extraor- 
dinary alterations under special circumstances, what role does it play in 
the creation of our day-to-day reality? Opinions are extremely varied. In 
private conversation Bohm admits to believing that the universe is all 
"thought" and reality exists oniy in what we think, 32 but again he prefers 
not to speculate about miraculous occurrences. Pribram is similarly 
reticent to comment on specific events but does believe a number of 
different potential realities exist and consciousness has a certain amount 
of latitude in choosing which one manifests. "I don't believe anything 
goes," he says, "but there are a lot of worlds out there that we don't 
understand." 33 

After years of firsthand experiences with the miraculous, Watson is 
bolder. "I have no doubt that reality is in a very large part a construct of 
the imagination. I am not speaking as a particle physicist or even as 
someone who is totally aware of what's going on in the frontier of that 
discipline, but I think we have the capacity to change the world around 
us in quite fundamental ways" (Watson, who was once enthusiastic 
about the holographic idea, is no longer convinced that any current 
theory in physics can adequately explain the supernormal abilities of the 
mind). 3 " 

Gordon Globus, a professor of psychiatry and philosophy at the 
University of California at Irvine, has a different but similar view. 
Globus thinks the holographic theory is correct in its assertion that the 
mind constructs concrete reality out of the raw material of the implicate. 
However, he has also been greatly influenced by anthropologist Carlos 
Castaneda's now famous otherworldly experiences with the Yaqui 
Indian shaman, Don Juan. In stark contrast to Pribram, he believes that 
the seemingly inexhaustible array of "separate realities" Castaneda 
experienced under Don Juan's tutelage — and indeed even the equally 
vast array of realities we experience during ordinary 
dreaming — indicate that there are an infinite number of potential reali- 
ties enfolded in the implicate. Moreover, because the holographic 
mechanisms the brain uses to construct everyday reality are the same 
ones it uses to construct our dreams and the realities we experience 
during Castanedaesque altered states of consciousness, he believes all 
three types of reality are fundamentally the same. 3 * 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


Does Consciousness Create Subatomic Particles or 
Not Create Subatomic Particles, That is the Question 

This difference of opinion indicates once again that the holographic 
theory is still very much an idea in the making, not unlike a newly 
formed Pacific island whose volcanic activity keeps it from having 
clearly defined shores. Although some might use this lack of consensus 
to criticize it, it should be remembered that Darwin's theory of evolution, 
certainly one of the most potent and successful ideas science has ever 
produced, is also still very much in a state of flux, and evolutionary 
theorists continue to debate its scope, interpretation, regulatory 
mechanisms, and ramifications. 

The difference of opinion also reveals just how complex a puzzle 
miracles are. Jahn and Dunne offer yet another opinion on the role 
consciousness plays in the creation of day-to-day reality, and although it 
differs from one of Bohm's basic premises, because of the possible 
insight it offers into the process by which miracles are effected, it 
deserves our attention. 

Unlike Bohm, Jahn and Dunne believe subatomic particles do not 
possess a distinct reality until consciousness enters the picture. "I think 
we have long since passed the place in high energy physics where we're 
examining the structure of a passive universe," Jahn states. "I think we're 
into the domain where the interplay of consciousness in the environment 
is taking place on such a primary scale that we are indeed creating 
reality by any reasonable definition of the term."™ 

As has been mentioned, this is the view held by most physicists. 
However, Jahn and Dunne's position differs from the mainstream in an 
important way. Most physicists would reject the idea that the interplay 
between consciousness and the subatomic world could in any way be 
used to explain PK, let alone miracles. In fact, the majority of physicists 
not only ignore any implications this interplay might have but actually 
behave as if it doesn't exist. "Most physicists develop a somewhat 
schizophrenic view," says quantum theorist Fritz Eohrlich of Syracuse 
University. "On the one hand they accept the standard interpretation of 
quantum theory. On the other they insist on the reality of quantum 
systems even when these are not observed." 37 

This bizarre I'm-not-going-to-think-about-it-even-when-I-know-it's- 



true attitude keeps many physicists from considering even the philo- 
sophical implications of quantum physics' most incredible findings. As N. 
David Mermin, a physicist at Cornell University, points out, physicists 
fall into three categories: a small minority is troubled by the 
philosophical implications; a second group has elaborate reasons why 
they are not troubled, but their explanations tend "to miss the point 
entirely"; and a third group has no elaborate explanations but also 
refuses to say why they aren't troubled. "Their position is unassailable," 
says Mermin. 38 

Jahn and Dunne are not so timid. They believe that instead of discov- 
ering particles, physicists may actually be creating them. As evidence, 
they cite a recently discovered subatomic particle called an anomalon, 
whose properties vary from laboratory to laboratory. Imagine owning a 
car that had a different color and different features depending on who 
drove it! This is very curious and seems to suggest that an anomalon's 
reality depends on who finds/creates it. 39 

Similar evidence may also be found in another subatomic particle. In 
the 1930s Pauli proposed the existence of a massless particle called a 
neutrino to solve an outstanding problem concerning radioactivity. For 
years the neutrino was only an idea, but then in 1957 physicists 
discovered evidence of its existence. In more recent years, however, 
physicists have realized that if the neutrino possessed some mass, it 
would solve several even thornier problems than the one facing Pauli, 
and lo and behold in 1 980 evidence started to come in that the neutrino 
had a small but measurable mass! This is not all. As it turned out, only 
laboratories in the Soviet Union discovered neutrinos with mass. Labo- 
ratories in the United States did not. This remained true for the better 
part of the 1 980s, and although other laboratories have now duplicated 
the Soviet findings, the situation is still unresolved, 4 " 

Is it possible that the different properties displayed by neutrinos are 
due at least in part to the changing expectations and different cultural 
biases of the physicists who searched for them? If so, such a state of 
affairs raises an interesting question. If physicists do not discover the 
subatomic world but create it, why do some particles, such as electrons, 
appear to have a stable reality no matter who observes them? In other 
words, why does a physics student with no knowledge of an electron 
still discover the same characteristics that a seasoned physicist 

One possible answer is that our perceptions of the world may not be 
based solely on the information we receive through our five senses. 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


As fantastic as this may sound, a very good case can be made for such a 
notion. Before explaining, I would like to relate an occurrence I 
witnessed in the middle 1970s. My father had hired a professional 
hypnotist to entertain a group of friends at his house and had invited me 
to attend the event. After quickly determining the hypnotic suscep- 
tibility of the various individuals present, the hypnotist chose a friend of 
my father's named Tom as his subject. This was the first time Tom had 
ever met the hypnotist. 

Tom proved to be a very good subject, and within seconds the hypnotist 
had him in a deep trance. He then proceeded with the usual tricks 
performed by stage hypnotists. He convinced Tom there was a giraffe in 
the room and had Tom gaping in wonder. He told Tom that a potato was 
really an apple and had Tom eat it with gusto. But the highlight of the 
evening was when he told Tom that when he came out of trance, his 
teenage daughter, Laura, would be completely invisible to him. Then, 
after having Laura stand directly in front of the chair in which Tom was 
sitting, the hypnotist awakened him and asked him if he could see her. 

Tom looked around the room and his gaze appeared to pass right 
through his giggling daughter. "No," he replied. The hypnotist asked 
Tom if he was certain, and again, despite Laura's rising giggles, he 
answered no. Then the hypnotist went behind Laura so he was hidden 
from Tom's view and pulled an object out of his pocket. He kept the 
object carefully concealed so that no one in the room could see it, and 
pressed it against the small of Laura's back. He asked Tom to identify 
the object. Tom leaned forward as if staring directly through Laura's 
stomach and said that it was a watch. The hypnotist nodded and asked if 
Tom could read the watch's inscription. Tom squinted as if struggling to 
make out the writing and recited both the name of the watch's owner 
(which happened to be a person unknown to any of us in the room) and 
the message. The hypnotist then revealed that the object was indeed a 
watch and passed it around the room so that everyone could see that 
Tom had read its inscription correctly. 

When I talked to Tom afterward, he said that his daughter had been 
absolutely invisible to him. All he had seen was the hypnotist standing 
and holding a watch cupped in the palm of his hand. Had the hypnotist 
let him leave without telling him what was going on, he never would 
have known he wasn't perceiving normal consensus reality. 

Obviously Tom's perception of the watch was not based on informa- 
tion he was receiving through his five senses. Where was he getting 



the information from? One explanation is that he was obtaining it 
telepathically from someone else's mind, in this case, the hypnotist's. 
The ability of hypnotized individuals to "tap" into the senses of other 
people has been reported by other investigators. The British physicist Sir 
William Barrett found evidence of the phenomenon in a series of 
experiments with a young girl. After hypnotizing the girl he told her that 
she would taste everything he tasted. " Standing behind the girl, whose 
eyes I had securely bandaged, I took up some salt and put it in my mouth; 
instantly she sputtered and exclaimed, 'What for are you putting salt in 
my mouth?' Then I tried sugar; she said 'That's better'; asked what it was 
like, she said 'Sweet' Then mustard, pepper, ginger, et cetera were tried; 
each was named and apparently tasted by the girl when I put them in my 
own mouth," 41 

In his book Experiments in Distant Influence the Soviet physiologist 
Leonid Vasiliev cites a German study conducted in the 1950s that 
produced similar findings. In that study, the hypnotized subject not only 
tasted what the hypnotist tasted, but blinked when a light was flashed in 
the hypnotist's eyes, sneezed when the hypnotist took a whiff of 
ammonia, heard the ticking of a watch held to the hypnotist's ear, and 
experienced pain when the hypnotist pricked himself with a needle — all 
done in a manner that safeguarded against her obtaining the information 
through normal sensory cues." - 

Our ability to tap into the senses of others is not limited to hypnotic 
states. In a now famous series of experiments physicists Harold Put-hoff 
and Russell Targ of the Stanford Research Institute in California found 
that just about everyone they tested had a capacity they call "remote 
viewing," the ability to describe accurately what a distant test subject is 
seeing. They found that individual after individual could remote-view 
simply by relaxing and describing whatever images came into their 
minds. 43 Puthoff and Targ's findings have been duplicated by dozens of 
laboratories around the world, indicating that remote viewing is 
probably a widespread latent ability in all of us. 

The Princeton Anomalies Research lab has also corroborated Puthoff 
and Targ's findings. In one study Jahn himself served as the receiver and 
tried to perceive what a colleague was observing in Paris, a city Jahn has 
never visited. In addition to seeing a bustling street, an image of a knight 
in armor came into Jahn's mind. It later turned out that the sender was 
standing in front of a government building ornamented with statuary of 
historical military figures, one of whom was a knight in armor. 44 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


So it appears that we are deeply interconnected with each other in yet 
another way, a situation that is not so strange in a holographic universe. 
Moreover, these interconnections manifest even when we are not 
consciously aware of them. Studies have shown that when a person in 
one room is given an electric shock, it will register in the polygraph 
readings of a person in another room.' > A light flashed in a test subject's 
eyes will register in the EEG readings of a test subject isolated in another 
room, 46 and even the blood volume of a test subject's finger changes — as 
measured by a plethysinograph, a sensitive indicator of autonomic 
nervous system functioning — when a "sender" in another room 
encounters the name of someone they know while reading a list 
composed mainly of names unknown to them. 41 

Given both our deep interconnectedness and our ability to construct 
entirely convincing realities out of information received via this inter- 
connectedness, such as Tom did, what would happen if two or more 
hypnotized individuals tried to construct the same imaginary reality? 
Intrigumgly, this question has been answered in an experiment con- 
ducted by Charles Tart, a professor of psychology at the Davis campus 
of the University of California, Tart found two graduate students, Anne 
and Bill, who could go into deep trance and were also skilled hypnotists 
in their own right. He had Anne hypnotize Bill and after he was 
hypnotized, he had Bill hypnotize her in return. Tart's reasoning was that 
the already powerful rapport that exists between hypnotist and subject 
would be strengthened by using this unusual procedure. 

He was right. When they opened their eyes in this mutually hypno- 
tized state everything looked gray. However, the grayness quickly gave 
way to vivid colors and glowing lights, and in a few moments they found 
themselves on a beach of unearthly beauty. The sand sparkled like 
diamonds, the sea was filled with enormous frothing bubbles and 
glistened like champagne, and the shoreline was dotted with translucent 
crystalline rocks pulsing with internal light. Although Tart could not see 
what Anne and Bill were seeing, from the way they were talking he 
quickly realized they were experiencing the same hallucinated reality. 

Of course, this was immediately obvious to Anne and Bill and they set 
about to explore their newfound world, swimming in the ocean and 
studying the glowing crystalline rocks. Unfortunately for Tart they also 
stopped talking, or at least they stopped talking from Tart's perspective. 
When he questioned them about their silence they told him that in their 
shared dreamworld they were talking, a phenomenon 



Tart feels involved some kind of paranormal communication between 
the two. 

In session after session Anne and Bill continued to construct various 
realities, and all were as real, available to the five senses, and 
dimen-sionalty realized, as anything they experienced in their normal 
waking state. In fact, Tart resolved that the worlds Anne and Bill visited 
we're actually more real than the pale, lunar version of reality with 
which most of us must be content. As he states, after "they had been 
talking about their experiences to each other for some time, and found 
they had been discussing details of the experiences they had shared for 
which there were no verbal stimuli on the tapes, they felt they must have 
actually been 'in' the nonworldly locales they had experienced." 48 

Anne and Bill's ocean world is the perfect example of a holographic 
reality — a three-dimensional construct created out of 
interconnected-ness, sustained by the flow of consciousness, and 
ultimately as plastic as the thought processes that engendered it. This 
plasticity was evident in several of its features. Although it was 
three-dimensional, its space was more flexible than the space of 
everyday reality and sometimes took on an elasticity Anne and Bill had 
no words to describe. Even stranger, although they were clearly highly 
skilled at sculpting a shared world outside themselves, they frequently 
forgot to sculpt their own bodies, and existed more often than not as 
floating faces or heads. As Anne reports, on one occasion when Bill told 
her to give him her hand, "I had to kind of conjure up a hand.'" 9 

How did this experiment in mutual hypnosis end? Sadly, the idea that 
these spectacular visions were somehow real, perhaps even more real 
than everyday reality, so frightened both Anne and Bill that they 
became increasingly nervous about what they were doing. They even- 
tually stopped their explorations, and one of them, Bill, even gave up 
hypnosis entirely. 

The extrasensory interconnectedness that allowed Anne and Bill to 
construct their shared reality might almost be viewed as a kind of field 
effect between them, a "reality -field" if you will. One wonders what 
would have happened if the hypnotist at my father's house had put all of 
us into a trance? In light of the evidence above, there is every reason to 
believe that if our rapport were deep enough, Laura would have become 
invisible to us all. We would have collectively constructed a reality -field 
of a watch, read its inscription, and been completely convinced that 
what we were perceiving was real. 

If consciousness plays a role in the creation of subatomic particles, 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


is it possible that our observations of the subatomic world are also 
reality -fie Ids of a kind? If Jahn can perceive a suit of armor through the 
senses of a friend in Paris, is it any more farfetched to believe that 
physicists all around the world are unconsciously interconnecting with 
one another and using a form of mutual hypnosis similar to that used by 
Tart's subjects to create the consensus characteristics they observe in an 
electron? This possibility may be supported by another unusual feature 
of hypnosis. Unlike other altered states of consciousness, hypnosis is 
not associated with any unusual EEG patterns. Physiologically speaking, 
the mental state hypnosis most closely resembles is our normal waking 
consciousness. Does this mean that normal waking consciousness is 
itself a kind of hypnosis, and we are all constantly tapping into 

Nobe list Josephs on has suggested that something like this may be 
going on. Like Globus, he takes Castaneda's work seriously and has 
attempted to relate it to quantum physics. He proposes that objective 
reality is produced out of the collective memories of the human race 
while anomalous events, such as those experienced by Castaneda, are 
the manifestation of the individual will. 50 

Human consciousness may not be the only thing that participates in 
the creation of reality -fields. Remote viewing experiments have shown 
that people can accurately describe distant locations even when there 
are no human observers present at the locations. 1 ' Similarly, subjects 
can identify the contents of a sealed box randomly selected from a 
group of sealed boxes and whose contents are therefore completely 
unknown. 52 This means that we can do more than just tap into the senses 
of other people. We can also tap into reality itself to gain information. 
As bizarre as this sounds, it is not so strange when one remembers that 
in a holographic universe, consciousness pervades all matter, and 
"meaning" has an active presence in both the mental and physical 

Bohm believes the ubiquitousness of meaning offers a possible ex- 
planation for both telepathy and remote viewing. He thinks both may 
actually be just different forms of psychokinesis. Just as PK is a 
resonance of meaning conveyed from a mind to an object, telepathy can 
be viewed as a resonance of meaning conveyed from a mind to a mind, 
says Bohm. In like manner, remote viewing can be looked at as a 
resonance of meaning conveyed from an object to a mind. "When 
harmony or resonance of 'meanings' is established, the action works 
both ways, so that the 'meanings' of the distant system could act in 



the viewer to produce a kind of inverse psychokinesis that would, in 
effect, transmit an image of that system to him," he states. Al 

Jahn and Dunne have a similar view. Although they believe reality is 
established only in the interaction of a consciousness with its envi- 
ronment, they are very liberal in how they define consciousness. As they 
see it, anything capable of generating, receiving, or utilizing information 
can qualify. Thus, animals, viruses, DNA, machines {artificially 
intelligent and otherwise), and so-called nonliving objects may all have 
the prerequisite properties to take part in the creation of reality. 1 " 1 

If such assertions are true, and we can obtain information not only 
from the minds of other human beings but from the living hologram of 
reality itself, psychometry — the ability to obtain information about an 
object's history simply by touching it — would also be explained. Rather 
than being inanimate, such an object would be suffused with its own 
kind of consciousness. Instead of being a "thing" that exists separately 
from the universe, it would be part of the mterconnected-ness of all 
things — connected to the thoughts of every person who ever came in 
contact with it, connected to the consciousness that pervades every 
animal and object that was ever associated with its existence, connected 
via the implicate to its own past, and connected to the mind of the 
psychometrist holding it. 

You Can Get Something for Nothing 

Do physicists play a role in the creation of subatomic particles? At 
present the puzzle remains unresolved, but our ability to interconnect 
with one another and conjure up realities that are as real as our normal 
waking reality is not the only clue that this may be the case. Indeed, the 
evidence of the miraculous indicates that we have scarcely even begun 
to fathom our talents in this area. Consider the following miraculous 
healing reported by Gardner. In 1982 an English physician named Ruth 
Coggin, working in Pakistan, was visited by a thirty-five -year-old 
Pakistani woman named Kamro. Kamro was eight months pregnant and 
for the better part of her pregnancy had suffered from bleeding and 
intermittent abdominal pain. Coggin recommended that she go into the 
hospital immediately, but Kamro refused. 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


Nonetheless, two days later her bleeding became so severe that she was 
admitted on an emergency basis. 

Coggin's examination revealed that Kamro's blood loss had been 
"very heavy," and her feet and abdomen were pathologically swollen. 
The next day Kamro had "another heavy bleed," forcing Coggin to 
perform a cesarean section. As soon as Coggin opened the uterus even 
more copious amounts of dark blood flooded out and continued to flow 
so heavily it became clear that Kamro had virtually no clotting ability. 
By the time Coggin delivered Kamro's healthy baby daughter, "deep 
pools of unclotted blood" filled her bed and continued to flow from her 
incision. Coggin managed to obtain two pints of blood to transfuse the 
gravely anemic woman, but it was not nearly enough to replace the 
staggering loss. Having no other options, Coggin resorted to prayer. 

She writes, "We prayed with the patient after explaining to her about 
Jesus in whose name we had prayed for her before the operation, and 
who was a great healer, I also told her that we were not going to worry. I 
had seen Jesus heal this condition before and was sure He was going to 
heal her. " Im 

Then they waited. 

For the next several hours Kamro continued to bleed, but instead of 
getting worse, her general condition stabilized. That evening Coggin 
prayed with Kamro again, and although her "brisk bleeding" continued 
unabated, she seemed unaffected by the loss. Forty-eight hours after the 
operation her blood finally began to clot and her recovery started in full. 
Ten days later she went home with her baby. 

Although Coggin had no way of measuring Kamro's actual blood loss, 
she had no doubts that the young mother had lost more than her total 
blood volume during the surgery and the profuse bleeding that ensued. 
After Gardner examined the documentation of the case, he agreed. The 
trouble with this conclusion is that human beings cannot produce new 
blood fast enough to cover such catastrophic losses; if they could, many 
fewer people would bleed to death. This leaves one with the unsettling 
conclusion that Kamro's new blood must have materialized out of thin 

The ability to create an infinitesimal particle or two pales in compari- 
son to the materialization of the ten to twelve pints of blood necessary to 
replenish the average human body. And blood is not the only thing we 
can create out of thin air. In June of 1974, while traveling in Timor 
Timur, a small island in easternmost Indonesia, Watson encountered 



an equally confounding example of materialization. Although his orig- 
inal intention had been to visit a famous matan do' ok, a type of 
Indonesian wonder-worker who was said to be able to make it rain on 
demand, he was diverted by accounts of an unusually active buan, an 
evil spirit, wreaking havoc in a house in a nearby village. 

The family living in the house consisted of a married couple, their two 
small boys, and the husband's unmarried younger half-sister. The couple 
and their children were typically Indonesian in appearance, with dark 
complexions and curly hair, but the half-sister, whose name was Alin, 
was physically very different and had a much lighter complexion and 
features that were almost Chinese, which accounted for her inability to 
obtain a husband. She was also treated with indifference by the family, 
and it was immediately plain to Watson that she was the source of the 
psychic disturbance. 

That evening during dinner in the family's grass-roofed home, Watson 
witnessed several startling phenomena. First, without warning, the 
couple's eight-year-old boy screamed and dropped his cup on the table 
as the back of his hand began to bleed inexplicably. Watson, who was 
sitting next to the boy, examined his hand and saw that there was a 
semicircle of fresh punctures on it, like a human bite, but with a 
diameter larger than the boy's. Alin, always the odd person out, was 
busy at the fire opposite the boy when this occurred. 

As Watson was examining the wounds, the lamp flame turned blue 
and abruptly flared up, and in the suddenly brighter light a shower of salt 
began to pour down over the food until it was completely covered and 
inedible. "It wasn't a sudden deluge, but a slow and deliberate action 
which lasted long enough for me to look up and see that it seemed to 
begin in midair, just about eye level, perhaps four feet over the table," 
says Watson. 

Watson immediately leapt up from the table, but the show wasn't over. 
Suddenly a series of loud rapping sounds issued from the table, and it 
began to wobble. The family also jumped up and all watched as the table 
bucked "like the lid on a box containing some wild animal," and finally 
flipped over on its side. Watson first reacted by running out of the house 
with the rest of the family, but when he recovered his senses he returned 
and searched the room for evidence of any trickery that might account 
for the occurrence. He found none. M 

The events that took place in the little Indonesian hut are classic 
examples of a poltergeist haunting, a type of haunting typified by 
mysterious sounds and psychokinetic activity rather than the appear- 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


ances of ghosts or apparitions. Because poltergeists tend to center more 
around people, in this case Alin, rather than places, many 
para-psychologists believe they are actually manifestations of the 
unconscious psychokinetic ability of the person around whom they are 
most active. Even materialization has a long and illustrious history in 
the annals of poltergeist research. For instance, in his classic work on 
the subject, Can We Explain the Poltergeist, A. R. G. Owen, a fellow 
and lecturer in Mathematics at Trinity College, Cambridge, gives 
numerous examples of objects materializing out of thin air in poltergeist 
cases dating from A.D. 530 to modern times. ST Small stones and not salt, 
however, are the objects that materialize most often. 

In the Introduction I mentioned that I had experienced firsthand many 
of the paranormal phenomena that would be discussed in this book and 
would relate a few of my own experiences. It is thus time to come clean 
and confess that I know how Watson must have felt after witnessing the 
sudden onslaught of psychokinetic activity in the little Indonesian hut 
because when I was a child, the house in which my family had recently 
moved (a new house that my parents themselves had built) became the 
site of an active poltergeist haunting. Since our poltergeist left my 
family's home and followed me when I went away to college, and since 
its activity very definitely seemed connected to my moods — its antics 
becoming more malicious when I was angry or my spirits were low, and 
more impish and whimsical when my mood was brighter — I have 
always accepted the idea that poltergeists are manifestations of the 
unconscious psychokinetic ability of the person around whom they are 
most active. 

This connection to my emotions displayed itself frequently. If I was in 
a good mood, I might wake up to find all of my socks draped over the 
house plants. If I was in a darker frame of mind, the poltergeist might 
manifest by hurling a small object across the room or occasionally even 
by breaking something. Over the years both I and various family 
members and friends witnessed a wide range of psychokinetic activity. 
My mother tells me that even when I was a toddler pots and pans had 
already begun to jump inexplicably from the middle of the kitchen table 
to the floor. I have written about some of these experiences in my book 
Beyond the Quantum. 

I do not make these disclosures lightly. I am aware of how alien such 
occurrences are to most people's experience and fully understand the 
skepticism with which they will be greeted in some quarters. Nonethe- 
less, I am compelled to talk about them because I think it is vitally 



important that we try to understand such phenomena and not just sweep 
them under the carpet. 

Still it is with some trepidation that I admit that my own poltergeist 
also occasionally materialized objects. The materializations started 
when I was six years old, and inexplicable showers of gravel rained 
down on our roof at night. Later it took to pelting me inside my home 
with small polished stones and pieces of broken glass with edges worn 
like the shards of drift glass one finds on the beach. On rarer occasions it 
materialized other objects including coins, a necklace, and several odder 
trifles. Unfortunately, I usually did not see the actual materializations, 
but only witnessed their aftermath, such as when a pile of spaghetti 
noodles (sans sauce) fell on my chest one day while I was taking a nap in 
my New York apartment. Given that I was alone in a room with no open 
windows or doors, there was no one else in my apartment, and there was 
no sign that anyone had either cooked spaghetti or broken in to throw 
spaghetti at me, I can only assume that, for reasons unknown, the 
handful of cold spaghetti noodles that dropped out of midair and onto 
my chest materialized out of nowhere. 

On a few occasions, however, I did see objects actually materialize. 
For example, in 1976 I was working in my study when I happened to 
look up and see a small brown object appear suddenly in midair just a 
few inches below the ceiling. As soon as it popped into existence it 
zoomed down at a sharp angle and landed at my feet. When I picked it 
up I saw that it was a piece of brown drift glass that originally might 
have been used in making beer bottles. It was not quite as spectacular as 
a shower of salt lasting several seconds, but it taught me that such things 
were possible. 

Perhaps the most famous modern-day materializations are those 
produced by Sathya Sai Baba, a sixty-four-year-old Indian holy man 
living in a distant corner of the state of Andhra Pradesh in southern India. 
According to numerous eyewitnesses, Sai Baba is able to produce much 
more than salt and a few stones. He plucks lockets, rings, and jewelry 
out of the air and passes them out as gifts. He also materializes an 
endless supply of Indian delicacies and sweets, and out of his hands 
pour volumes of mbuti, or sacred ash. These events have been witnessed 
by literally thousands of individuals, including both scientists and 
magicians, and no one has ever detected any hint of trickery. One 
witness is psychologist Erlendur Haraldsson of the University of 

Haraldsson has spent over ten years studying Sai Baba and has 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


published his findings in a recent book entitled Modern Miracles: An 
Investigative Report on Psychic Phenomena Associated with Sathya Sai 
Baba. Although Haraldsson admits that he cannot prove conclusively 
that Sai Baba's productions are not the result of deception and sleight of 
hand, he offers a large amount of evidence that strongly suggests 
something supernormal is taking place. 

For starters, Sai Baba can materialize specific objects on request. 
Once when Haraldsson was having a conversation with him about 
spiritual and ethical issues, Sai Baba said that daiiy life and spiritual life 
should "grow together like a double rudraksha." When Haraldsson 
asked what a double rudraksha was, neither Sai Baba nor the interpreter 
knew the English equivalent of the term. Sai Baba tried to continue with 
the diseussion, but Haraldsson remained insistent. "Then suddenly, with 
a sign of impatience, Sai Baba closed his list and waved his hand for a 
second or two. As he opened it, he turned to me and said: 'This is it.' In 
his palm was an acorn-like object. This was two rudrakshas grown 
together like a twin orange or a twin apple," says Haraldsson. 

When Haraldsson indicated that he wanted to keep the double-seed as 
a memento, Sai Baba agreed, but first asked to see it again. "He enclosed 
the rudraksha in both his hands, blew on it, and opened his hands toward 
me. The double rudraksha was now covered, on the top and bottom, by 
two golden shields held together by a short golden chain. On the top was 
a golden cross with a small ruby affixed to it, and a tiny opening so that 
it could hang on a chain around the neck." 58 Haraldsson later discovered 
that double rudrakshas were extremely rare botanical anomalies. Several 
Indian botanists he consulted said they had never even seen one, and 
when he finally found a small, malformed specimen in a shop in Madras, 
the shopkeeper wanted the Indian equivalent of almost three hundred 
dollars for it. A London goldsmith confirmed that the gold in the 
ornamentation had a purity of at least twenty -two carats. 

Such gifts are not rare. Sai Baba frequently hands out costly rings, 
jewels, and objects made of gold to the throngs who visit him daily and 
who venerate him as a saint. He also materializes vast quantities of food, 
and when the various delicacies he produces fall from his hands they are 
sizzling hot, so hot that people sometimes cannot even hold them. He 
can make sweet syrups and fragrant oils pour from his hands (and even 
his feet), and when he is finished there is no trace of the sticky substance 
on his skin. He can produce exotic objects such 



as grains of rice with tiny, perfectly carved pictures of Krishna on them, 
out-of-season fruits (a near impossibility in an area of the country that 
has no electricity or refrigeration), and anomalous fruits, such as apples 
that, when peeled, turn out to be an apple on one side and another fruit 
on the other. 

Equally astonishing are his productions of sacred ash. Every time he 
walks among the crowds that visit him, prodigious amounts of it pour 
from his hands. He scatters it everywhere, into oifered containers and 
outstretched hands, over heads, and in long serpentine trails on the 
ground. In a single transit of the grounds around his ashram he can 
produce enough of it to fill several drums. On one of his visits, 
Haraldsson, along with Dr. Karlis Osis, the director of research for the 
American Society for Psychical Research, actually saw some of the ash 
in the process of materializing. As Haraldsson reports, "His palm was 
open and turned downwards, and he waved his hand in a few quick, 
small circles. As he did, a grey substance appeared in the air just below 
his palm. Dr. Osis, who sat slightly closer, observed that this material 
first appeared entirely in the form of granules (that crumbled into ash 
when touched) and might have disintegrated earlier if Sai Baba had 
produced them by a sleight of hand that was undetectable to us." 59 

Haraldsson notes that Sai Baba's manifestations are not the result of 
mass hypnosis because he freely allows his open-air demonstrations to 
be filmed, and everything he does still shows up in the film. Similarly, 
the production of specific objects, the rarity of some of the objects, the 
hotness of the food, and the sheer volume of the materializations seem 
to ruie against deception as a possibility. Haraldsson also points out that 
no one has ever come forth with any credible evidence that Sai Baba is 
faking his abilities, in addition, Sai Baba has been producing a 
continuous flow of objects for half a century, since he was fourteen, a 
fact that is further testament to both the volume of the materializations 
and the significance of his untarnished reputation. Is Sai Baba 
producing objects out of nothingness? At present the jury is still out, but 
Haraldsson makes it clear what his position is. He believes Sai Baba's 
demonstrations remind us of the "enormous potentials that may lie 
dormant somewhere within all human beings." 60 

Accounts of individuals who can materialize are not unknown in 
India. In his book Autobiography of a Yogi, Paramahansa Yoga-nanda 
(1893-1952), the first eminent holy man of India to set up permanent 
residence in the West, describes his meetings with several Hindu 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


ascetics who could materialize out-of-season fruits, gold plates, and 
other objects. Interestingly, Yogananda cautioned that such powers, or 
siddis, are not always evidence that the person possessing them is 
spiritually evolved. "The world [is] nothing but an objectivized dream," 
says Yogananda, and "whatever your powerful mind believes very 
intensely instantly comes to pass." 6 ' Have such individuals discovered a 
way to tap just a little of the enormous sea of cosmic energy that Bohm 
says fills every cubic centimeter of empty space? 

A remarkable series of materializations that has received even greater 
confirmation than that bestowed by Haraldsson on Sai Baba was 
produced by Therese Neumann. In addition to her stigmata, Neumann 
also displayed media, the supernormal ability to live without food. Her 
inedia began in 1923 when she "transferred" the throat disease of a 
young priest to her own body and subsisted solely on liquids for several 
years. Then, in 1927, she gave up both food and water entirely. 

When the local bishop in Regensburg first learned of Neumann's fast, 
he sent a commission into her home to investigate. From July 14, 1927, 
to July 29, 1927, and under the supervision of a medical doctor named 
Seidl, four Franciscan nursing sisters scrutinized her every move. They 
watched her day and night, and the water she used for washing and 
rinsing her mouth was carefully measured and weighed. The sisters 
discovered several unusual things about Neumann. She never went to 
the bathroom (even after a period of six weeks she only had one bowel 
movement, and the excrement, examined by a Dr. Reismanns, contained 
only a small amount of mucus and bile, but no traces of food). She also 
showed no signs of dehydration, even though the average human expels 
about four hundred grams (fourteen ounces) of water daily in the air he 
or she exhales, and a like amount through the pores. And her weight 
remained constant; although she lost nearly nine pounds (in blood) 
during the weekly opening of her stigmata, her weight returned to 
normal within a day or two later. 

At the end of the inquiry Dr. Seidl and the sisters were completely 
convinced that Neumann had not eaten or drunk a thing for the entire 
fourteen days. The test seems conclusive, for while the human body can 
survive two weeks without food, it can rarely survive half that time 
without water. Yet this was nothing for Neumann; she did not eat or 
drink a thing for the next thirty -five years. So it appears that she was not 
only materializing the enormous amount of blood necessary to 
perpetuate her stigmata, but also regularly materializing the 



water and nutrients she needed to stay alive and in good health. Inedia is 
not unique to Neumann. In The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism, 
Thurston gives several examples of stigmatists who went for years 
without eating or drinking. 

Materialization may be more common than we realize. Compelling 
accounts of bleeding statues, paintings, icons, and even rocks that have 
historical or religious significance abound in the literature on the 
miraculous. There are also dozens of stories of Madonnas and other 
icons shedding tears. A virtual epidemic of "weeping Madonnas" swept 
Italy in 1953. 6 - And in India, followers of Sai Baba showed Haraldsson 
pictures of the ascetic that were miraculously exuding sacred ash. 

Changing the Whole Picture 

In a way materialization challenges our conventional ideas about reality 
most of all, for although we can, with effort, hammer things such as PK 
into our current world view, the creation of an object out of thin air rocks 
the very foundation of that world view. Still, it is not all the mind can do. 
So far we have looked at miracles that involve only "parts" of 
reality — examples of people psychokine tic ally moving parts around, of 
people altering parts (the laws of physics) to make themselves immune 
to fire, and of people materializing parts {blood, salt, stones, jewelry, 
ash, nutrients, and tears). But if reality is really an unbroken whole, why 
do miracles seem to involve only parts? 

If miracles are examples of the mind's own latent abilities, the answer, 
of course, is because we ourselves are so deeply programmed to see the 
world in terms of parts. This implies that if we were not so inculcated in 
thinking in terms of parts, if we viewed the world differently, miracles 
would also be different. Bather than finding so many examples of 
miracles in which the parts of reality had been transformed, we would 
find more instances in which the whole of reality had been transformed. 
In fact a few such examples exist, but they are rare and offer an even 
graver challenge to our conventional ideas about reality than 
materializations do. 

Watson provides one. While he was in Indonesia he also encountered 
another young woman with power. The woman's name was Tia, but 
unlike Alin's power, hers did not seem to be an expression of an 
unconscious psychic gift. Instead it was consciously controlled and 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


stemmed from Tia's natural connection to forces that lie dormant in most 
of us. Tia was, in short, a shaman in the making. Watson witnessed 
many examples of her gifts. He saw her perform miraculous healings, 
and once, when she was engaged in a power struggle with the local 
Moslem religious leader, he saw her use the power of her mind to set the 
minaret of the local mosque on fire. 

But he witnessed one of Tia's most awesome displays when he 
accidentally stumbled upon her talking with a little girl in a shady grove 
of kenari trees. Even at a distance, Watson could tell from Tia's gestures 
that she was trying to communicate something important to the child. 
Although he could not hear their conversation, he could tell from her air 
of frustration that she was not succeeding. Finally, she appeared to get an 
idea and started an eerie dance. 

Entranced, Watson continued to watch as she gestured toward the 
trees, and although she scarcely seemed to move, there was something 
hypnotic about her subtle gesticulations. Then she did something that 
both shocked and dismayed Watson. She caused the entire grove of trees 
suddenly to blink out of existence. As Waison states, "One moment Tia 
danced in a grove of shady kenari; the next she was standing alone in the 
hard, bright light of the sun." 63 

A few seconds later she caused the grove to reappear, and from the 
way the little girl leapt to her feet and rushed around touching the trees, 
Watson was certain that she had shared the experience also. But Tia was 
not finished. She caused the grove to blink on and off several times as 
both she and the little girl linked hands, dancing and giggling at the 
wonder of it all. Watson simply walked away, his head reeling. 

In 1975 when I was a senior at Michigan State University I had a 
similarly profound and reality-challenging experience. I was having 
dinner with one of my professors at a local restaurant, and we were 
discussing the philosophical implications of Carlos Castaneda's experi- 
ences. In particular our conversation centered around an incident 
Cas-taneda relates in Journey to Ixtlan. Don Juan and Castaneda are in 
the desert at night searching for a spirit when they come upon a creature 
that looks like a calf but has the ears of a wolf and the beak of a bird. It is 
curled up and screaming as if in the throes of an agonizing death. 

At first Castaneda is terrified, but after telling himself that what he is 
seeing can't possibly be real, his vision changes and he sees that the 
dying spirit is actually a fallen tree branch trembling in the wind. 
Castaneda proudly points out the thing's true identity, but as usual the 



oid Yaqui shaman rebukes him. He tells Castaneda that the branch was 
a dying spirit while it was alive with power, but that it had transformed 
into a tree branch when Castaneda doubted its existence. However, he 
stresses that both realities were equally real. 

In my conversation with my professor, I admitted that I was intrigued 
by Don Juan's assertion that two mutually exclusive realities could each 
be real and felt that the notion could explain many paranormal events. 
Moments after discussing this incident we left the restaurant and, 
because it was a clear summer night, we decided to stroll. As we 
continued to converse I became aware of a small group of people 
walking ahead of us. They were speaking an unrecognizable foreign 
language, and from their boisterous behavior it appeared that they were 
drunk. In addition, one of the women was carrying a green umbrella, 
which was strange because the sky was totally cloudless and there had 
been no forecast of rain. 

Not wanting to collide with the group, we dropped back a little, and as 
we did, the woman suddenly began swinging the umbrella in a wild and 
erratic manner. She traced out huge arcs in the air, and several times as 
she spun around, the tip of the umbrella nearly grazed us. We slowed 
our pace even more, but it became increasingly apparent that her 
performance was designed to attract our attention. Finally, after she had 
our gaze firmly fixed on what she was doing, she held the umbrella with 
both hands over her head and then threw it dramatically at our feet. 

We both stared at it dumbly, wondering why she had done such a 
thing, when suddenly something remarkable began to happen. The 
umbrella did something that I can only describe as "flickering" like a 
lantern flame about to go out. It emitted an odd, crackling sound like the 
sound of cellophane being crumpled, and in a dazzling array of 
sparkling, multicolored light, its ends curled up, its color changed, and it 
reshaped itself into a gnarled, brown-gray stick. I was so stunned I didn't 
say anything for several seconds. My professor spoke first and said in a 
quiet, shocked voice that she had thought the object had been an 
umbrella. I asked her if she had seen something extraordinary happen 
and she nodded. We both wrote down what we thought had transpired 
and our accounts matched exactly. The only vague difference in our 
descriptions was that my professor said the umbrella had "sizzled" when 
it transformed into a stick, a sound not too terribly dissimilar from the 
crackly sound of cellophane being crumpled. 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


What Does It All Mean? 

This incident raises many questions for which I have no answers. I do 
not know who the people were who threw the umbrella at our feet, or if 
they were even aware of the magical transformation that took place as 
they strolled away, although the woman's bizarre and seemingly 
purposeful performance suggests that they were not completely un- 
witting. Both my professor and I were so transfixed by the magical 
transformation of the umbrella that by the time we had the presence of 
mind to ask them, they were long gone. I do not know why the event 
happened, save that it seems obvious it was connected in some way to 
our talk about Castaneda encountering a similar occurrence. 

I do not even know why I have had the privilege of experiencing so 
many paranormal occurrences, save that it appears to be related to the 
fact that I was born with a great deal of native psychic ability. As an 
adolescent I started having vivid and detailed dreams about events that 
would later happen. I often knew things about people I had no right 
knowing. When I was seventeen I spontaneously developed the ability 
to see an energy field, or "aura," around living things, and to this day 
can often determine things about a person's health by the pattern and 
colors of the mist of light that I see surrounding them. Above and 
beyond that, all I can say is that we are all gifted with different aptitudes 
and qualities. Some of us are natural artists. Some dancers. I seem to 
have been born with the chemistry necessary to trigger shifts in reality, 
to catalyze somehow the forces required to precipitate paranormal 
events. 1 am grateful for this capacity because it has taught me a great 
deal about the universe, but I do not know why I have it. 

What I do know is that the "umbrella incident," as I have come to call 
it, entailed a radical alteration in the world. In this chapter we have 
looked at miracles that have involved increasingly greater shifts in 
reality. PK is easier for us to fathom than the ability to pluck an object 
out of the air, and the materialization of an obj ect is easier for most of us 
to accept than the appearance and disappearance of an entire grove of 
trees, or the paranormal appearance of a group of people capable of 
transmogrifying matter from one form into another. More and more 
these incidents suggest that reality is, in a very real sense, a hologram, a 

The question becomes, Is it a hologram that is relatively stable for 



long periods of time and subject to only minimal alterations by con- 
sciousness, as Bohm suggests? Or is it a hologram that only seems stable, 
but under special circumstances can be changed and reshaped in 
virtually limitless ways, as the evidence of the miraculous suggests? 
Some researchers who have embraced the holographic idea believe the 
latter is the ease. For example, Grof not only takes materialisation and 
other extreme paranormal phenomena seriously, but feels that reality is 
indeed cloud-built and pliant to the subtle authority of consciousness. 
"The world is not necessarily as solid as we perceive it," he says M 

Physicist William Tiller, head of the Department of Materials Science 
at Stanford University and another supporter of the holographic idea, 
agrees. Tiller thinks reality is similar to the "holodeck" on the television 
show Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the series, the holodeck is an 
environment in which occupants can call up a holographic simulation of 
literally any reality they desire, a lush forest, a bustling city. They can 
also change each simulation in any way they want, such as cause a lamp 
to materialize or make an unwanted table disappear. Tiller thinks the 
universe is also a kind of holodeck created by the "integration" of all 
living things. "We've created it as a vehicle of experience, and we've 
created the laws that govern it," he asserts. "And when we get to the 
frontiers of our understanding, we can in fact shift the laws so that we're 
also creating the physics as we go along." 65 

If Tiller is right and the universe is an enormous holodeck, the ability 
to materialize a gold ring or cause a grove of kenari trees to flick on and 
off is no longer so strange. Even the umbrella incident can be viewed as a 
temporary aberration in the holographic simulation we call ordinary 
reality. Although my professor and I were unaware that we possessed 
such an ability, it may be that the emotional fervor of our discussion 
about Castaneda caused our unconscious minds to change the hologram 
of reality to better reflect what we were believing at the moment. Given 
Ullman's assertion that our psyche is constantly trying to teach us things 
we are unaware of in our waking state, our unconscious may even be 
programmed to produce occasionally such miracles in order to offer us 
glimpses of reality's true nature, to show us that the world we create for 
ourselves is ultimately as creatively infinite as the reality of our dreams. 

Saying that reality is created by the integration of all living things is 
really no different from saying that the universe is comprised of 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


reality fields. If this is true, it explains why the reality of some subatomic 
particles, such as electrons, seems relatively fixed, while the reality of 
others, such as anomalons, appears to be more plastic. It may be that the 
reality fields we now perceive as electrons became part of the cosmic 
hologram long ago, perhaps long before human beings were even part of 
the integration of all things. Hence, electrons may be so deeply ingrained 
in the hologram they are no longer as susceptible to the influence of 
human consciousness as other newer reality fields. Similarly, anomalons 
may vary from lab to lab because they are more recent reality fields and 
are still inchoate, still floundering around in search of an identity, as it 
were. In a sense, they are like the champagne beach Tart's subjects 
perceived while it was still in its gray state and had not yet fully 
coalesced out of the implicate. 

This may also explain why aspirin helps prevent heart attacks in 
Americans, but not in the British. It, too, may be a relatively recent 
reality field and one that is still in the making. There is even evidence 
that the ability to materialize blood is a comparatively recent reality field. 
Rogo notes that accounts of blood miracles began with the 
fourteenth-century miracle of San Gennaro. The fact that no blood 
miracles are known to predate San Gennaro seems to indicate that the 
ability flickered into existence at that time. Once it was thus established 
it would be easier for others to tap into the reality field of its possibility, 
which may explain why there have been numerous blood miracles since 
San Gennaro, but none before. 

Indeed, if the universe is a holodeck, all things that appear stable and 
eternal, from the laws of physics to the substance of galaxies, would 
have to be viewed as reality fields, will-o'-the-wisps no more or less real 
than the props in a giant, mutually shared dream. All permanence would 
have to be looked at as illusory, and only consciousness would be eternal, 
the consciousness of the living universe. 

Of course, there is one other possibility. It may be that only anomalous 
events, such as the umbrella incident, are reality fields, and the world at 
large is still every bit as stable and unaffected by consciousness as we 
have been taught to believe. The problem with this assumption is that it 
can never be proved. The only litmus test we have of determining 
whether something is real, say a purple elephant that has just strolled into 
our living room, is to find out if other people can see it as well. But once 
we admit that two or more people can create a reality — whether it is a 
transforming umbrella or a vanishing grove of kenari trees — we no 
longer have any way of proving that every- 



thing else in the world is not created by the mind. It all boils down to a 
matter of personal philosophy. 

And personal philosophies vary. Jahn prefers to think that only the 
reality created by the interactions of consciousness are real. "The 
question of whether there's an 'out there' out there is abstract. If we have 
no way of verifying the abstraction, there is no profit in attempting to 
model it," he says. 66 Globus, who willingly admits that reality is a 
construct of consciousness, prefers to think that there is a world beyond 
the bubble of our perceptions. "I'm interested in nice theories," he says, 
"and a nice theory postulates existence." 1 '" 7 However, he admits that 
this is merely his bias, and there is no empirical way to prove such an 

As for me, as a result of my own experiences I agree with Don Juan 
when he states, "We are perceivers. We are an awareness; we are not 
objects; we have no solidity. We are boundless. The world of objects 
and solidity is a way of making our passage on earth convenient. It is 
only a description that was created to help us. We, or rather our reason, 
forget that the description is only a description and thus we entrap the 
totality of ourselves in a vicious circle from which we rarely emerge in 
our lifetime." 6 * 1 

Put another way, there is no reality above and beyond that created by 
the integration of all consciousnesses, and the holographic universe can 
potentially be sculpted in virtually limitless ways by the mind. 

If this is true, the laws of physics and the substance of galaxies are not 
the only things that are reality fields. Even our bodies, the vehicles of 
our consciousness in this life, would have to be looked upon as no more 
or less real than anomalous and champagne beaches. Or as Keith Floyd, 
a psychologist at Virginia Intermont College and another supporter of 
the holographic idea, states, "Contrary to what everyone knows is so, it 
may not be the brain that produces consciousness, but rather 
consciousness that creates the appearance of the brain — matter, space, 
time and everything else we are pleased to interpret as the physical 

ii 69 


This is perhaps most disturbing of all, for we are so deeply convinced 
that our bodies are solid and objectively real it is difficult for us even to 
entertain the idea that we, too, may be no more than will-o'-the-wisps. 
But there is compelling evidence that this is also the case. Another 
phenomenon often associated with saints is bilocation, or the ability to 
be in two places at once. According to Haraldsson, Sai Baba does 
biolocation one better. Numerous witnesses have reported 

A Pocketful of Miracles 


watching him snap his fingers and vanish, instantly reappearing a 
hundred or more yards away. Such incidents very much suggest that our 
bodies are not objects, but holographic projections that can blink "off" in 
one location and "on" in another with the same ease that an image might 
vanish and reappear on a video screen. 

An incident that further underscores the holographic and immaterial 
nature of the body can be found in phenomena produced by an Icelandic 
medium named Indridi Indridason. In 1 905 several of Iceland's leading 
scientists decided to investigate the paranormal and chose Indridason as 
one of their subjects. At the time, Indridason was just a country bumpkin 
with no previous experience with things psychic, but he quickly proved 
to be a spectacularly talented medium. He could go into trance quickly 
and produce dramatic displays of PK. But most bizarre of all, sometimes 
while he was deep in trance, different parts of his body would 
completely dematerialize. As the astonished scientists watched, an arm 
or a hand would fade out of existence, only to re materialize before he 
awakened. 70 

Such events again offer us a tantalizing glimpse of the enormous 
potentialities that may lie dormant in all of us. As we have seen, our 
current scientific understanding of the universe is completely incapable 
of explaining the various phenomena we have examined in this chapter 
and therefore has no choice but to ignore them. However, if researchers 
such as Grof and Tiller are correct and the mind is able to intercede in 
the implicate order, the holographic plate that gives birth to the 
hologram we call the universe, and thus create any reality or laws of 
physics that it wants to, then not only are such things possible, but 
virtually anything is possible. 

If this is true, the apparent solidity of the world is only a small part of 
what is available to our perception. Although most of us are indeed 
entrapped in our current description of the universe, a few individuals 
do have the ability to see beyond the world's solidity. In the next chapter 
we will take a look at some of these individuals and examine what they 

Seeing Holographically 

We human beings consider ourselves to be made up of "solid 
matter." Actually, the physical body is the end product, so to 
speak, of the subtle information fields, which mold our physical 
body as wed as all physical matter. These fields ore holograms 
which change in time (and are) outside the reach of our normal 
senses. This is what clairvoyants perceive as colorful egg-shaped 
halos or auras surrounding our physical bodies. 

— Hzhak Bentov 

Stalking the Wild Pendulum 

A number of years ago I was walking along with a friend when a street 
sign caught my attention. It was simply a No Parking sign and seemed 
no different from any of the other No Parking signs that dotted the city 
streets. But for some reason it held me transfixed. I wasn't even aware 
that I was staring at it until my friend suddenly exclaimed, "That sign is 
misspelled!" Her announcement snapped me out of my reverie, and as I 
watched, the ;' in the word Parking quickly changed into an e. 

What happened was that my mind was so accustomed to seeing the 
sign spelled correctly that my unconscious edited out what was there 
and made me see what it expected to be there. My friend, as it turned out, 
had also seen the sign spelled correctly at first, which was why she had 
such a vocal reaction when she realized it was misspelled. We 


Seeing Holographically 


continued to walk on, but the incident bothered roe. For the first time I 
realized that the eye/brain is not a faithful camera, but tinkers with the 
world before it gives it to us. 

Neurophysiologists have long been aware of this fact In his early 
studies of vision, Pribram discovered that the visual information a 
monkey receives via its optic nerves does not travel directly into its 
visual cortex, but is first filtered through other areas of its brain. 1 
Numerous studies have shown that the same is true of human vision. 
Visual information entering our brains is edited and modified by our 
temporal lobes before it is passed on to our visual cortices. Some studies 
suggest that less than 50 percent of what we "see" is actually based on 
information entering our eyes. The remaining 50 percent plus is pieced 
together out of our expectations of what the world should look like {and 
perhaps out of other sources such as reality fields). The eyes may be 
visual organs, but it is the brain that sees. 

This is why we don't always notice when a close friend shaves off his 
mustache, and why our house always looks strangely different when we 
return to it after a vacation. In both instances we are so used to 
responding to what we think is there, we don't always see what really is 

Even more dramatic evidence of the role the mind plays in creating 
what we see is provided by the eye's so-called blind spot. In the middle of 
the retina, where the optic nerve connects to the eye, we have a blind 
spot where there are no photoreceptors. This can be quickly 
demonstrated with the illustration shown in figure 15. 

Even when we look at the world around us we are totally unaware that 
there are gaping holes in our vision. It doesn't matter whether we are 
gazing at a blank piece of paper or an ornate Persian carpet The brain 
artfully fills in the gaps like a skilled tailor reweaving a hole in a piece of 
fabric. What is all the more remarkable is that it reweaves the tapestry of 
our visual reality so masterfully we aren't even aware that it is doing so. 

This leads to a disturbing question. If we are seeing less than half of 
what is out there, what is out there that we are not seeing? What 
misspelled street signs and blind spots are escaping our attention 
completely? Our technological prowess provides us with a few answers. 
For example, although spiderwebs look drab and white to us, we now 
know that to the ultraviolet-sensitive eyes of the insects for whom they 
were designed, they are actually brightly colored and hence alluring. 
Our technology also tells us that fluorescent lamps do 



FIGURE 15. To demonstrate how our brains construct what we 
perceive as reality, hold the illustration at eye level, close your left eye, and stare at 
the circle in the middle of the grid with your right eye. Slowly move the book back 
and forth along the line of your vision until the star vanishes (about 10 to 15 
inches). The star disappears because it is falling on your blind spot. Now close 
your right eye and stare at the star. Move the book back and forth until the circle 
in the middle of the grid vanishes. When it does, notice that although the circle 
disappears, all the lines of the grid remain intact. This is because your brain is filling 
in what it thinks should be there. 

not continuously provide light, but are actually flickering on and off at a 
rate that is just a little too fast for us to discern. Yet this unsettling 
strobelike effect is quite visible to honeybees, who must be able to fly at 
breakneck speed over a meadow and still see every flower that whizzes 

But are there other important aspects of reality that we are not seeing, 
aspects that are beyond even our technological grasp? According to the 
holographic model, the answer is yes. Remember that in Pribram's view, 
reality at large is really a frequency domain, and our brain is a kind of 
lens that converts these frequencies into the objective world of 
appearances. Although Pribram began by studying the frequencies of 
our normal sensory world, such as frequencies of sound and light, he 
now uses the term frequency domain to refer to the interference patterns 
that compose the implicate order. 

Pribram believes there may be all kinds of things out there in the 
frequency domain that we are not seeing, things our brains have learned 
to edit out regularly of our visual reality. He thinks that when 

Seeing Holographicaliy 


mystics have transcendental experiences, what they are really doing is 
catching glimpses of the frequency domain. "Mystical experience 
makes sense when one can provide the mathematical formulas that take 
one back and forth between the ordinary world, or 'image-object' 
domain, and the 'frequency' domain," he states." 

The Human Energy Field 

One mystical phenomenon that appears to involve the ability to see 
reality's frequency aspects is the aura, or human energy field. The notion 
that there is a subtle field of energy around the human body, a halolike 
envelope of light that exists just beyond normal human perception, can 
be found in many ancient traditions. In India, sacred writings that date 
back over five thousand years refer to this life energy as prana. In China, 
since the third millennium B.C., it has been called ch 'i and is believed to 
be the energy that flows through the acupuncture meridian system. 
Kabbalah, a Jewish mystical philosophy that arose in the sixth century 
B.C., calls this vital principle nefish and teaches that an egg-shaped 
bubble of iridescence surrounds every human body. In their book 
Future Science, writer John White and parapsychologist Stanley 
Krippner list 97 different cultures that refer to the aura with 97 different 

Many cultures believe the aura of an extremely spiritual individual is 
so bright it is visible even to normal human perception, which is why so 
many traditions, including Christian, Chinese, Japanese, Tibetan, and 
Egyptian, depict saints as having halos or other circular symbols around 
their heads. In his book on miracles Thurston devotes an entire chapter 
to accounts of luminous phenomena associated with Catholic saints, and 
both Neumann and Sai Baba are reported to have occasionally had 
visible auras of light around them. The great Sufi mystic Hazrat Inayat 
Khan, who died in 1927, is said to have sometimes given off so much 
light that people could actually read by it. 3 

Under normal circumstances, however, the human energy field is 
visible only to individuals who have a specially developed capacity to 
see it. Sometimes people are bom with the ability. Sometimes it devel- 
ops spontaneously at a certain point in a person's life, as it did in my case, 
and sometimes it develops as the result of some practice or discipline, 
often of a spiritual nature. The first time I saw the distinc- 



tive mist of light around my arm I thought it was smoke and jerked my 
arm up to see if I had somehow caught my sleeve on fire. Of course, I 
hadn't and quickly discovered that the light surrounded my entire body 
and formed a nimbus around everyone else's as well. 

According to some schools of thought the human energy field has a 
number of distinct layers. I do not see layers in the field and have no 
personal basis to judge if this is true or not. These layers are actually said 
to be three-dimensional energy bodies that occupy the same space as the 
physical body but are of increasingly larger size so that they only look 
like layers, or strata, as they extend outward from the body. 

Many psychics assert that there are seven main layers, or subtle bodies, 
each progressively less dense than the one before it, and each 
increasingly more difficult to see. Different schools of thought refer to 
these energy bodies by different names. One common system of no- 
menclature refers to the first four as the etheric body; the astral, or 
emotional body; the mental body, and the causal, or intuitive body. It is 
generally believed that the etheric body, the body that is closest in size to 
the physical body, is a kind of energy blueprint and is involved in 
guiding and shaping the growth of the physical body. As their names 
suggest, the next three bodies are related to emotional, mental, and 
intuitive processes. Virtually no one agrees on what to call the 
remaining three bodies, although it is commonly agreed that they have 
to do with the soul and higher spiritual functioning. 

According to Indian yogic literature, and to many psychics as well, we 
also have special energy centers in our body. These focal points of subtle 
energy are connected to endocrine glands and major nerve centers in the 
physical body, but also extend up and into the energy field. Because they 
resemble spinning vortices of energy when they are looked at head-on, 
yogic literature refers to them as chakras, from the Sanskrit word for 
"wheel," and this term is still used today. 

The crown chakra, an important chakra that originates in the upper- 
most tip of the brain and is associated with spiritual awakening, is often 
described by clairvoyants as looking like a little cyclone whirling in the 
energy field on top of the head, and it is the only chakra I see clearly. 
(My own abilities appear to be too rudimentary to permit me to see the 
other chakras.) It ranges from a few inches to a foot or more in height. 
When people are in a joyous state, this whirlwind of energy grows taller 
and brighter, and when they dance, it bobs and sways like a candle flame. 
I've often wondered if this was what the apostle Luke 

Seeing Hoiographkially 


was seeing when he described the "flame of the Pentecost," the tongues 
of fire that appeared on the heads of the apostJes when the Holy Ghost 
descended on them. 

The human energy field is not always bluish white, but can possess 
various colors. According to talented psychics, these colors, their 
mud-diness or intensity, and their location in the aura are related to a 
person's mental state, emotional state, activity, health, and assorted 
other factors. I can only see colors occasionally and sometimes can 
interpret their meaning, but again my abilities in this area are not terribly 

One person who does have advanced abilities is therapist and healer 
Barbara Brennan. Brennan began her career as an atmospherics phys- 
icist working for NASA at the Goddard Space Flight Center, and later 
left to become a counselor. Her first inkling that she was psychic came 
when she was a child and discovered she could walk blindfolded 
through the woods and avoid the trees simply by sensing their energy 
fields with her hands. Several years after she became a counselor, she 
began seeing halos of colored light around people's heads. After over- 
coming her initial shock and skepticism, she set about to develop the 
ability and eventually discovered she had an extraordinary natural talent 
as a healer. 

Brennan not only sees the chakras, layers, and other fine structures of 
the human energy field with exceptional clarity, but can make 
startiingly accurate medical diagnoses based on what she sees. After 
looking at one woman's energy field, Brennan told her there was 
something abnormal about her uterus. The woman then told Brennan 
that her doctor had discovered the same problem, and it had already 
caused her to have one miscarriage. In fact, several physicians had 
recommended a hysterectomy and that was why she was seeking 
Brennan's counsel. Brennan told her that if she took a month off and 
took care of herself, her problem would clear up. Brennan's advice 
turned out to be correct, and a month later the woman's physician 
confirmed that her uterus had returned to normal. A year later the 
woman gave birth to a healthy baby boy." 1 

In another case Brennan was able to see that a man had problems 
performing sexually because he had broken his coccyx (tailbone) when 
he was twelve. The still out-of -place coccyx was applying undue pres- 
sure to his spinal column, and this in turn was causing his sexual 
dysfunction. 5 

There seems to be little Brennan cannot pick up by looking at the 



human energy field. She says that in its early stages cancer looks 
gray -blue in the aura, and as it progresses, it turns to black. Eventually, 
white spots appear in the black, and if the white spots sparkle and begin 
to look as if they are erupting from a volcano, it means the cancer has 
metastasized. Drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine are also 
detrimental to the brilliant, healthy colors of the aura and create what 
Brennan calls "etheric mucus." In one instance she was able to tell a 
startled client which nostril he habitually used to snort cocaine because 
the field over that side of his face was always gray with the sticky 
etheric mucus. 

Prescription drugs are not exempt, and often cause dark areas to form 
in the energy field over the liver. Potent drugs such as chemotherapy 
"clog" the entire field, and Brennan says she has even seen auric traces 
of the supposedly harmless radiopaque dye used to diagnose spinal 
injuries, a full ten years after it has been injected into a person's spine. 
According to Brennan, a person's psychological condition is also 
reflected in their energy field. An individual with psychopathic 
tendencies has a top-heavy aura. The energy field of a masochistic 
personality is coarse and dense and is more gray than blue. The field of a 
person with a rigid approach to life is also coarse and grayish, but with 
most of its energy concentrated on the outer edge of the aura, and so on. 

Brennan says that illness can actually be caused by tears, blockages, 
and imbalances in the aura, and by manipulating these dysfunctional 
areas with her hands and her own energy field, she can greatly enhance 
a person's own healing processes. Her talents have not gone unnoticed. 
Swiss psychiatrist and thanatologist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross says 
Brennan is "probably one of the best spiritual healers in the Western 
Hemisphere." 6 Bernie Siege? is equally iaudatory: "Barbara Brennan's 
work is mind opening. Her concepts of the role disease plays and how 
healing is achieved certainly fitin with my experience." 7 

As a physicist, Brennan is keenly interested in describing the human 
energy field in scientific terms and believes Pribram's assertion that 
there is a frequency domain beyond our field of normal perception is the 
best scientific model we have so far for understanding the phenomenon. 
"From the point of view of the holographic universe, these events [the 
aura and the healing forces required to manipulate its energies] emerge 
from frequencies that transcend time and space; they don't have to be 
transmitted. They are potentially simultaneous and everywhere," she 

Seeing Holographieally 


That the human energy field exists everywhere and is nonlocal until it 
is plucked out of the frequency domain by human perception is 
evidenced in Brennan's discovery that she can read a person's aura even 
when the person is many miles distant. The longest-distance aura 
reading she has done so far was during a telephone conversation 
between New York City and Italy. She discusses this, as well as many 
other aspects of her remarkable abilities, in her recent and fascinating 
book Hands of Light. 

The Energy Field of the Human Psyche 

Another gifted psychic who can see the aura in great detail is Los 
Angeles-based "human energy field consultant" Carol Dryer. Dryer 
says she has been able to see auras for as long as she can remember, and 
indeed it was quite some time before she realized other people couldn't 
see auras. Her ignorance in this regard frequently landed her in trouble 
as a child when she would tell her parents intimate details about their 
friends, things she had no apparent way of knowing. 

Dryer makes her living as a psychic, and in the past decade and a half 
has seen over five thousand clients. She is well known in the media 
because her client list inclodes many celebrities such as Tina Turner, 
Madonna, Rosanna Arquette, Judy Collins, Valerie Harper, and Linda 
Gray. But even the star power of her client list does not begin to convey 
the true extent of her talent. For instance, Dryer's client list also includes 
physicists, noted journalists, archaeologists, lawyers, and politicians, 
and she has used her abilities to assist the police and frequently does 
consultation work for psychologists, psychiatrists, and medical doctors. 

Like Brennan, Dryer can give long-distance readings, but prefers to 
be in the same room with the person. She can also see a person's energy 
field as well with her eyes closed as she can with her eyes open. In fact, 
she generally keeps her eyes closed during a reading to help her 
concentrate solely on the energy field. This does not mean that she sees 
the aura only in her mind's eye. "It's always in front of me as if I'm 
looking at a movie or a play," says Dryer. "It's as real as the room I'm 
sitting in. Actually, it's more real and more brightly colored." 9 

However, she does not see the precise stratified layers described by 
other clairvoyants, and she often doesn't even see the outline of the 



human energy field. She says that in its early stages cancer looks 
gray -blue in the aura, and as it progresses, it turns to black. Eventually, 
white spots appear in the black, and if the white spots sparkle and begin 
to look as if they are erupting from a volcano, it means the cancer has 
metastasized. Drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine are also 
detrimental to the brilliant, healthy colors of the aura and create what 
Brennan calls "etheric mucus." In one instance she was able to tell a 
startled client which nostril he habitually used to snort cocaine because 
the field over that side of his face was always gray with the sticky 
etheric mucus. 

Prescription drugs are not exempt, and often cause dark areas to form 
in the energy field over the liver. Potent drugs such as chemotherapy 
"clog" the entire field, and Brennan says she has even seen auric traces 
of the supposedly harmless radiopaque dye used to diagnose spinal 
injuries, a full ten years after it has been injected into a person's spine. 
According to Brennan, a person's psychological condition is also 
reflected in their energy field. An individual with psychopathic 
tendencies has a top-heavy aura. The energy field of a masochistic 
personality is coarse and dense and is more gray than blue. The field of a 
person with a rigid approach to life is also coarse and grayish, but with 
most of its energy concentrated on the outer edge of the aura, and so on. 

Brennan says that illness can actually be caused by tears, blockages, 
and imbalances in the aura, and by manipulating these dysfunctional 
areas with her hands and her own energy field, she can greatly enhance 
a person's own healing processes. Her talents have not gone unnoticed. 
Swiss psychiatrist and thanatologist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross says 
Brennan is "probably one of the best spiritual healers in the Western 
Hemisphere." 6 Bernie Sieget is equally taudatory: "Barbara Brennan's 
work is mind opening. Her concepts of the role disease plays and how 
healing is achieved certainly fit in with my experience." 7 

As a physicist, Brennan is keenly interested in describing the human 
energy field in scientific terms and believes Pribram's assertion that 
there is a frequency domain beyond our field of normal perception is the 
best scientific model we have so far for understanding the phenomenon. 
"From the point of view of the holographic universe, these events [the 
aura and the healing forces required to manipulate its energies] emerge 
from frequencies that transcend time and space; they don't have to be 
transmitted. They are potentially simultaneous and everywhere," she 

Seeing Holographicaily 


That the human energy field exists everywhere and is nonlocal until it 
is plucked out of the frequency domain by human perception is 
evidenced in Brennan's discovery that she can read a person's aura even 
when the person is many miles distant. The longest-distance aura 
reading she has done so far was during a telephone conversation 
between New York City and Italy. She discusses this, as well as many 
other aspects of her remarkable abilities, in her recent and fascinating 
book Hands of Light 

The Energy Field of the Human Psyche 

Another gifted psychic who can see the aura in great detail is Los 
Angeles-based "human energy field consultant" Carol Dryer. Dryer 
says she has been able to see auras for as long as she can remember, and 
indeed it was quite some time before she realized other people couldn't 
see auras. Her ignorance in this regard frequently landed her in trouble 
as a child when she would tell her parents intimate details about their 
friends, things she had no apparent way of knowing. 

Dryer makes her living as a psychic, and in the past decade and a half 
has seen over five thousand clients. She is well known in the media 
because her client list includes many celebrities such as Tina Turner, 
Madonna, Rosanna Arquette, Judy Collins, Valerie Harper, and Linda 
Gray. But even the star power of her client list does not begin to convey 
the true extent of her talent. For instance, Dryer's elient list also 
includes physicists, noted journalists, archaeologists, lawyers, and 
politicians, and she has used her abilities to assist the police and 
frequently does consultation work for psychologists, psychiatrists, and 
medical doctors. 

Like Brennan, Dryer can give long-distance readings, but prefers to 
be in the same room with the person. She can also see a person's energy 
field as well with her eyes closed as she can with her eyes open. In fact, 
she generally keeps her eyes closed during a reading to help her 
concentrate solely on the energy field. This does not mean that she sees 
the aura only in her mind's eye. "It's always in front of me as if Fm 
looking at a movie or a play," says Dryer. "It's as real as the room I'm 
sitting in. Actually, it's more real and more brightly colored." 9 

However, she does not see the precise stratified layers described by 
other clairvoyants, and she often doesn't even see the outline of the 



physical body. "A person's physical body can come into it, but rarely 
because that's seeing the etheric body rather than seeing the aura or the 
energy field around them. If I'm seeing the etheric, it's usually because 
it contains leaks or rips that are keeping the aura from being whole. 
Thus I cannot see it completely. There are only patches of it. It's kind of 
like a ripped blanket or a torn curtain. Holes in the etheric field are 
usually the result of trauma, injury, illness, or some other kind of 
devastating experience. " 

But beyond seeing the etheric, Dryer says that instead of seeing the 
layers of the aura like tiers of cake piled one on top of the other, she 
experiences them as changing textures and intensities of visual sensa- 
tion. She compares this to being immersed in the ocean and feeling 
water of different temperatures wash by. "Rather than getting into rigid 
concepts like layers, I tend to see the energy field in terms of 
movements and waves of energy," she says. "It's as if my vision is 
telescoping through various levels and dimensions of the energy field, 
but I don't actually see it neatly arranged in various layers." 

This does not mean that Dryer's perception of the human energy field 
is in any way less detailed than Brennan's. She perceives a dazzling 
amount of pattern and structure — kaleidoscopic clouds of color shot 
through with light, complex images, glistening shapes, and gossamer 
mists. However, not all energy fields are created equal. According to 
Dryer, shallow people have shallow and humdrum auras. Conversely, 
the more complex the person, the more complex and interesting their 
energy field. "A person's energy field is as individual as their fingerprint. 
I've never really seen any two that look alike," she says. 

Like Brennan, Dryer can diagnose illnesses by looking at a person's 
aura, and when she chooses she can adjust her vision and see the 
chakras. But Dryer's special skill is the ability to peer deep into a 
person's psyche and give them an eerily accurate status report of the 
weaknesses, strengths, needs, and general health of their emotional, 
psychological, and spiritual being. So profound are her talents in this 
area that some have likened a session with Dryer to six months of 
psychotherapy. Numerous clients have credited her with completely 
transforming their lives, and her files are filled with glowing letters of 

I, too, can attest to Dryer's abilities. In my first reading with her, and 
although we were virtual strangers, she proceeded to describe things 
about me that not even my closest friends know. These were 

Seeing Hoiographicaiiy 


not just vague platitudes, but specific and detailed assessments of my 
talents, vulnerabilities, and personality dynamics. By the end of the 
two-hour session I was convinced that Dryer had not been looking at my 
physical presence, but at the energy construct of my psyche itself. I have 
also had the privilege of talking with and/or listening to the session 
recordings of over two dozen of Dryer's clients, and have discovered 
that, almost without exception, others have found her as accurate and 
insightful as did I. 

Doctors Who See the Human Energy Field 

Although the existence of the human energy field is not recognized by 
the medical orthodox community, it has not been completely ignored by 
medical practitioners. One medical professional who takes the energy 
field seriously is neurologist and psychiatrist Shafica Karagulla. 
Karagulla received her degree of doctor of medicine and surgery from 
the American University of Beirut, Lebanon, and obtained her training 
in psychiatry under the well-known psychiatrist Professor Sir David K. 
Henderson, at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital for Mental and Nervous 
Disorders. She also spent three and a half years as a research associate to 
Wilder Penfietd, the Canadian neurosurgeon whose landmark studies of 
memory launched both Lashley and Pribram on their quest 

Karagulla began as a skeptic, but after encountering several in- 
dividuals who could see auras, and confirming their ability to make 
accurate medical diagnoses as a result of what they saw, she became a 
believer. Karagulla calls the faculty to see the human energy field 
higher sense perception, or HSP, and in the 1960s she set out to 
determine if any members of the medical profession also possessed the 
ability. She put out various feelers among her friends and colleagues, 
but at first the going was slow. Even doctors who were said to have the 
ability were reluctant to meet with her. After being put off repeatedly by 
one such doctor, she finally made an appointment to see him as a 

She entered his office, but instead of allowing him to perform a 
physical examination to diagnose her condition, she challenged him to 
use his higher sense perception. Realizing he was cornered, he gave in. 
"AH right, stay where you are," he told her. "Don't tell me any- 



thing." Then he scanned her body and gave her a quick run-down of her 
health, including a description of an internal condition she had that 
would eventually require surgery, a condition she had secretly already 
diagnosed. He was "correct in every detaii," says Karagulla. 1 " 

As Karagulla's network of contacts expanded, she met doctor after 
doctor with similar gifts and describes these encounters in her book 
Breakthrough to Creativity. Most of these physicians were unaware that 
other individuals existed who possessed similar talents, and felt they 
were alone and peculiar in this regard. Nonetheless, they invariably 
described what they were seeing as an "energy field" or a "moving web 
of frequency" around the body and interpenetrating the body. Some saw 
chakras, but because they were ignorant of the term, they described 
them as "vortices of energy at certain points along the spine, connected 
with or influencing the endocrine system." And almost without 
exception they kept their abilities a secret out of fear of damaging their 
professional reputations. 

Out of respect for their privacy, Karagulla identifies them in her book 
by first name only but says they include famous surgeons, Cornell 
University professors of medicine, heads of departments in large 
hospitals, and Mayo Clinic physicians. "I was continually surprised to 
find how many members of the medical profession had HSP abilities," 
she writes. "Most of them felt a little uneasy about their gifts, but 
finding them useful in diagnosis, they used them. They came from many 
parts of the country, and although they were unknown to each other, 
they all reported similar types of experiences. " At the end of her report, 
she concludes, "When many reliable individuals independently report 
the same kind of phenomena, it is time science takes cognizance of it." 11 
Not all health professionals are so opposed to going public with their 
abilities. One such individual is Dr. Dolores Krieger, a professor of 
nursing at New York University. Krieger became interested in the 
human energy field after participating in a study of the abilities of Oscar 
Estebany, a well-known Hungarian healer. After discovering that 
Estebany could raise the hemoglobin levels in ill patients simply by 
manipulating their fields, Krieger set out to learn more about the 
mysterious energies involved. She immersed herself in a study oiprana, 
the chakras, and the aura, and eventually became a student of Dora 
Kunz, another well-known clairvoyant. Under Kunz's guidance, she 
learned how to feel blockages in the human energy field and to heal by 
manipulating the field with her hands. 

Seeing Holographic ally 


Realizing the enormous medical potential of Kunz's techniques, 
Krieger decided to teach what she had learned to others. Because she 
knew terms such as aura and chakra would have negative connotations 
for many health-care professionals, she decided to call her healing 
method "therapeutic touch." The first class she taught on therapeutic 
touch was a master's level course for nurses at New York University 
entitled "Frontiers in Nursing: The Actualization of Potential for 
Therapeutic Field Interaction." Both the course and the technique 
proved so successful that Krieger has since taught therapeutic touch to 
literally thousands of nurses, and it is now used in hospitals around the 

The effectiveness of therapeutic touch has also been demonstrated in 
several studies. For example, Dr. Janet Quinn, an associate professor 
and assistant director of nursing research at the University of South 
Carolina at Columbia, decided to see if therapeutic touch could lower 
the anxiety levels of heart patients. To accomplish this she devised a 
double -blind study in which one group of nurses trained in the 
technique would pass their hands over a group of heart patients' bodies. 
A second group with no training would pass their hands over the bodies 
of another group of heart patients, but without actually performing the 
technique. Quinn found that the anxiety levels in the authentically 
treated patients dropped 17 percent after only five minutes of therapy, 
but there was no change in anxiety levels among the patients who 
received the "fake" treatment Quinn's study was the lead story in the 
Science Times section of the March 26, 1985, issue of the New York 

Another health professional who lectures widely about the human 
energy field is University of Southern California heart and lung spe- 
cialist Vf. Brugh Joy. Joy, who is a graduate of both Johns Hopkins and 
the Mayo Clinic, discovered his gift .in 1972 while examining a patient 
in his office. Instead of seeing the aura, Joy initially was only able to 
feel its presence with his hands. "I was examining a healthy -male in his 
early twenties," he says. "As my hand passed over the solar plexus area, 
the pit of the stomach, I sensed something that felt like a warm cloud. It 
seemed to radiate out three to four feet from the body, perpendicular to 
the surface and to be shaped like a cylinder about four inches in 
diameter." 12 

Joy went on to discover that all his patients had palpable cyiinderiike 
radiations emanating not only from their stomachs, but from various 
other points on their bodies. It wasn't until he read an ancient Hindu 



book about the human energy system that he found he had discovered, 
or rather rediscovered, the chakras. Like Brennan, Joy thinks the 
holographic model offers the best explanation for understanding the 
human energy field. He also feels that the ability to see auras is latent in 
alt of us. " 1 believe that reaching expanded states of consciousness is 
merely the attuning of our central nervous system to perceptive states 
that have always existed in us but have been blocked by our outer 
mental conditioning," says Joy. 13 

To prove his point, Joy now spends most of his time teaching others 
how to sense the human energy field. One of Joy's students is Michael 
Crichton, the author of such bestsellers as The Andromeda Strain and 
Sphere) and the director of the motion pictures Coma and The First 
Great Train Robbery. In his recent bestselling autobiography Travels, 
Crichton, who obtained his medical degree from the Harvard University 
Medical School, describes how he learned to feel and eventually see the 
human energy field by studying under both Joy and other gifted teachers. 
The experience astonished and transformed Crichton. "There isn't any 
delusion. It is absolutely clear that this body energy is a genuine 
phenomenon of some kind," he states. 14 

Chaos Holographic Patterns 

The increasing willingness of doctors to go public with such abilities is 
not the only change that has taken place since Karagulla did her 
investigations. Over the past twenty years Valerie Hunt, a physical 
therapist and professor of kinesiology at UCLA, has developed a way to 
confirm experimentally the existence of the human energy field. 
Medical science has long known that humans are electromagnetic 
beings. Doctors routinely use electrocardiographs to make electrocar- 
diograms (EKGs) or records, of the electrical activity of the heart, and 
electroencephalographs to make electroencephalograms (EEGs) of the 
brain's electrical activity. Hunt has discovered that an electromyo-graph, 
a device used to measure the electrical activity in the muscles, can also 
pick up the electrical presence of the human energy field. 

Although Hunt's original research involved the study of human 
muscular movement, she became interested in the energy field after 
encountering a dancer who said she used her own energy field to help 
her dance. This inspired Hunt to make electromyograms (EMGs) of the 

Seeing Holographically 


electrical activity in the woman's muscies while she danced, and also to 
study the effect healers had on the electrical activity in the muscles of 
people being healed. Her research eventually expanded to include 
individuals who could see the human energy field, and it was here that 
she made some of her most significant discoveries. 

The normal frequency range of the electrical activity in the brain is 
between and 100 cycles per second (cps), with most of the activity 
occurring between and 30 cps. Muscle frequency goes up to about 225 
cps, and the heart goes up to about 250 cps, but this is where electrical 
activity associated with biological function drops off. In addition to these, 
Hunt discovered that the electrodes of the electromyo-graph could pick 
up another field of energy radiating from the body, much subtler and 
smaller in amplitude than the traditionally recognized body electricities 
but with frequencies that averaged between 100 and 1600 cps, and 
which sometimes went even higher. Moreover, instead of emanating 
from the brain, heart, or muscles, the field was strongest in the areas of 
the body associated with the chakras. "The results were so exciting that I 
simply was not able to sleep that night," says Hunt. "The scientific 
model I had subscribed to throughout my life just couldn't explain these 
findings." 15 

Hunt also discovered that when an aura reader saw a particular color 
in a person's energy field, the electro myograph always picked up a 
specific pattern of frequencies that Hunt learned to associate with that 
color. She was able to see this pattern on an oscilloscope, a device that 
converts electrical waves into a visual pattern on a monochromatic 
video display screen. For example, when an aura reader saw blue in a 
person's energy field, Hunt could confirm that it was blue by looking at 
the pattern on the oscilloscope. In one experiment she even tested eight 
aura readers simultaneously to see if they would agree with the 
oscilloscope as well as with each other. "It was the same right down the 
line," says Hunt. 16 

Once Hunt confirmed the existence of the human energy field, she, 
too, became convinced that the holographic idea offers one model for 
understanding it. In addition to its frequency aspects, she points out that 
the energy field, and indeed all of the body's electrical systems, is 
holographic in another way. Like the information in a hologram, these 
systems are distributed globally throughout the body. For instance, the 
electrical activity measured by an electroencephalograph is strongest in 
the brain, but an EEG reading can also be made by attaching an 
electrode to the toe. Similarly, an EKG can be picked up 



in the little finger. It's stronger and higher in amplitude in the heart, but 
its frequency and pattern are the same everywhere in the body. Hunt 
believes this is significant. Although every portion of what she calls the 
"holographic field reality" of the aura contains aspects of the whole 
energy field, different portions are not absolutely identical to each other. 
These differing amplitudes keep the energy field from being a static 
hologram, and instead allow it to be dynamic and flowing, says Hunt. 

One of Hunt's most startling findings is that certain talents and 
abilities seem to be related to the presence of specific frequencies in a 
person's energy field. She has found that when the main focus of a 
person's consciousness is on the material world, the frequencies of their 
energy field tend to be in the lower range and are not too far removed 
from the 250 cps of the body's biological frequencies. In addition to 
these, people who are psychic or who have healing abilities also have 
frequencies of roughly 400 to 800 cps in their field. People who can go 
into trance and apparently channel other information sources through 
them, skip these "psychic" frequencies entirely and operate in a narrow 
band between 800 and 900 cps. "They don't have any psychic breadth at 
all," states Hunt. "They're up there in their own field. It's narrow. It's 
pinpointed, and they literally are almost out of it" 17 

People who have frequencies above 900 cps are what Hunt calls 
mystical personalities. Whereas psychics and trance mediums are often 
just conduits of information, mystics possess the wisdom to know what 
to do with the information, says Hunt. They are aware of the cosmic 
interrelatedness of all things and are in touch with every level of human 
experience. They are anchored in ordinary reality, but often have both 
psychic and trance abilities. However, their frequencies also extend way 
beyond the bands associated with these capabilities. Using a modified 
electromyogram (an electro myogram can normally detect frequencies 
only up to 20,000 cps) Hunt has encountered individuals who have 
frequencies as high as 200,000 cps in their energy fields. This is 
intriguing, for mystical traditions have often referred to highly spiritual 
individuals as possessing a "higher vibration" than normal people. If 
Hunt's findings are correct, they seem to add credence to this assertion. 

Another of Hunt's discoveries involves the new science of chaos. As 
its name implies, chaos is the study of chaotic phenomena, i.e., pro- 
cesses that are so haphazard they do not appear to be governed by any 

Seeing Holo graphically 


laws. For example, when smoke rises from an extinguished candle it 
flows upward in a thin and narrow stream. Eventually the structure of 
the stream breaks down and becomes turbulent. Turbulent smoke is said 
to be chaotic because its behavior can no longer be predicted by science. 
Other examples of chaotic phenomena include water when it crashes at 
the bottom of a waterfall, the seemingly random electrical fluctuations 
that rage through the brain of an epileptic during a seizure, and the 
weather when several different temperature and air-pressure fronts 

In the past decade science has discovered that many chaotic phe- 
nomena are not as disordered as they seem and often contain hidden 
patterns and regularities (recall Bohm's assertion that there is no such 
thing as disorder, only orders of indefinitely high degree). Scientists 
have also discovered mathematical ways of finding some of the 
regularities that lie hidden in chaotic phenomena. One of these involves 
a special kind of mathematical analysis that can convert data about a 
chaotic phenomenon into a shape on a computer screen. If the data 
contains no hidden patterns, the resulting shape will be a straight line. 
But if the chaotic phenomenon does contain hidden regularities, the 
shape on the computer screen will look something like the spiral designs 
children make by winding colored yarn around an array of nails 
pounded into a board. These shapes are called "chaos patterns" or 
"strange attractors" (because the tines that compose the shape seem to 
be attracted again and again to certain areas of the computer screen, just 
as the yarn might be said to be repeatedly "attracted" to the array of nails 
around which it is wound). 

When Hunt observed energy field data on the oscilloscope, she no- 
ticed that it changed constantly. Sometimes it came in great clumps, 
sometimes it waned and became patchy, as if the energy field itself were 
in an unceasing state of fluctuation. At first glance these changes 
seemed random, but Hunt sensed intuitively they possessed some order. 
Realizing that chaos analysis might reveal whether she was right or not, 
she sought out a mathematician. First they ran four seconds of data from 
an EKG through the computer to see what would happen. They got a 
straight line. Then they ran the same amount of data from an EEG and 
an EMG. The EEG produced a straight line and the EMG produced a 
slightly swollen line, but still no chaos pattern. Even when they 
submitted data from the lower frequencies of the human energy field, 
they got a straight line. But when they analyzed the very high 
frequencies of the field they met with success. "We got 



the most dynamic chaos pattern you ever saw," says Hunt. 1 " 

This meant that although the kaleidoscopic changes taking place in 
the energy field appeared to be random, they were actually very highly 
ordered and rich with pattern. "The pattern is never a repeatable one, but 
it's so dynamic and complex, I call it a chaos holograph pattern," Hunt 
states. 19 

Hunt believes her discovery was the first true chaos pattern to be 
found in a major eleetrobiological system. Recently researchers have 
found chaos patterns in EEG recordings of the brain, but they needed 
many minutes of data from numerous electrodes to obtain such a pattern. 
Hunt obtained a chaos pattern from three to four seconds of data 
recorded by one electrode, suggesting that the human energy field is far 
richer in information and possesses a far more complex and dynamic 
organization than even the electrical activity of the brain. 

What Is the Human Energy Field Made Of? 

Despite the human energy field's electrical aspects. Hunt does not 
believe it is purely electromagnetic in nature. "We have a feeling that it 
is much more complex and without doubt composed of an as yet 
undiscovered energy," she says. 20 

What is this undiscovered energy? At present we do not know. Our 
best clue comes from the fact that almost without exception psychics 
describe it as having a higher frequency or vibration than normal 
matter-energy. Given the uncanny accuracy talented psychics have in 
perceiving illnesses in the energy field, we should perhaps pay serious 
attention to this observation. The universality of this perception — even 
ancient Hindu literature asserts that the energy body possesses a higher 
vibration than normai matter — may be an indication that such 
individuals are intuiting an important fact about the energy field. 

Ancient Hindu literature also describes matter as being composed of 
anu, or "atoms," and says that the subtle vibratory energies of the human 
energy field exist paramanu, or literally "beyond the atom." This is 
interesting, for Bohm also believes that at a subquantum level beyond 
the atom there are many subtle energies still unknown to science. He 
confesses that he does not know whether the human energy field exists 
or not, but in commenting on the possibility, he states, "The implicate 
order has many levels of subtlety. If our attention can 

Seeing Holo graphically 


go to those levels of subtlety, then we should be able to see more than 
we ordinarily see.'" 1 

It is worth noting that we really don't know what any field is. As 
Bohm has said, "What is an electric field? We don't know.' l2E When we 
discover a new kind of field it seems mysterious. Then we name it, get 
used to dealing with it and describing its properties, and it no longer 
seems mysterious. But we still do not know what an electric or a 
gravitational field really is. As we saw in an earlier chapter, we don't 
even know what electrons are. We can only describe how they behave. 
This suggests that the human energy field will also ultimately be defined 
in terms of how it behaves, and research such as Hunt's will only further 
our understanding. 

Three-Dimensional Images in the Aura 

If these inordinately subtle energies are the stuff from which the human 
energy field is made, we may rest assured that they possess qualities 
unlike the kinds of energy with which we are normally familiar. One of 
these is evident in the human energy field's nonlocal characteristics. 
Another, and one that is particularly holographic, is the aura's ability to 
manifest as an amorphous blur of energy, or occasionally form itself into 
three-dimensional images. Talented psychics often report seeing such 
"holograms" floating in people's auras. These images are usually of 
objects and ideas that hold a prominent position in the thoughts of the 
person around whom they are seen. Some occult traditions hold that 
such images are a product of the third, or mental, layer of the aura, but 
until we have the means to confirm or deny this allegation, we must 
confine ourselves to the experiences of the psychics who are able to see 
images in the aura. 

One such psychic is Beatrice Rich. As often happens, Rich's powers 
manifested at an early age. When she was a child, objects in her 
presence would occasionally move about on their own accord. When 
she grew older she discovered she knew things about people she had no 
normal means of knowing. Although she began her career as an artist, 
her clairvoyant talents proved so impressive that she decided to become 
a full-time psychic. Now she gives readings for individuals from all 
walks of life, from housewives to chief executives of corporations, and 
articles about her work have appeared in such diverse publi- 



cations as New York magazine, World Tennis, and New York Woman. 

Rich often sees images floating around or hovering near her clients. 
Once she saw silver spoons, silver plates, and similar objects circling 
around a man's head. Because it was early in her explorations of psychic 
phenomena, the experience startled her. At first she did not know why 
she was seeing what she was seeing. But finally she told the man and 
discovered that he was in the import/export business and traded in the 
very objects she was seeing circling his head. The experience was 
riveting and changed her perceptions forever. 

Dryer has had many similar experiences. Once during a reading she 
saw a bunch of potatoes whirling around a woman's head. Like Rich, 
she was at first dumbfounded but summoned her courage and asked the 
woman if potatoes had any special meaning for her. The woman 
laughed and handed Dryer her business card. " She was from the Idaho 
Potato Board, or something like that," says Dryer. "You know, the 
potato grower's equivalent of the American Dairy Association." 23 

These images don't always just hover in the aura, but sometimes can 
appear to be ghostly extensions of the body itself- On one occasion 
Dryer saw a wispy and holographiclike layer of mud clinging to a 
woman's hands and arms. Given the woman's impeccable grooming and 
expensive attire, Dryer could not imagine why thoughts of mucking 
around in some kind of viscous sludge would be occupying her mind. 
Dryer asked her if she understood the image, and the woman nodded, 
explaining that she was a sculptor and had tried out a new medium that 
morning that had clung to her arms and hands exactly as Dryer had 

I, too, have had similar experiences when looking at the energy field. 
Once, while deep in thought about a novel I was working on about 
werewolves (as some readers may be aware, I have a fondness for 
writing fiction about folkloric subjects), I noticed that the ghostly image 
of a werewolf's body had formed around my own body. I would quickly 
like to stress that this was a purely visual phenomenon and at no time 
did I feel I had in any way become a werewolf. Nonetheless, the 
holographiclike image that enveloped my body was real enough that 
when I lifted my arm I could actually see the individual hairs in the fur 
and the way the canine nails protruded from the wolfish hand that 
encased my own hand. Indeed, everything about these features was 
absolutely real, save that they were translucent and I could see my own 
flesh-and-blood hand beneath them. The experience should 

Seeing Holographically 


have been frightening, but for some reason it wasn't, and I found myself 
only fascinated by what I was seeing. 

What was significant about this experience was that Dryer was my 
house guest at the time and happened to walk into the room while I was 
still sheathed in this phantomlike werewolf body. She reacted 
immediately and said, "Oh my, you must be thinking about your were- 
wolf novel because you've become a werewolf. " We compared notes 
and discovered that we were each observing the same features. We 
became involved in conversation, and as my thoughts strayed from the 
novel, the werewolf image slowly faded. 

Movies in the Aura 

The images that psychics see in the energy field are not always static. 
Rich says she often sees what looks like a little transparent movie going 
on around a client's head: " Sometimes I see a small image of the person 
behind their head or shoulders doing various things they do in life. My 
clients tell me that my descriptions are very accurate and specific. I can 
see their offices and what their bosses look like. I can see what they've 
thought of and what's happened to them during the last six months. 
Recently I told a client that I could see her home and she had masks and 
flutes hanging on her wall. She said, 'No, no, no.' 1 said yes, there are 
musical instruments hanging on the wall, mostly Outes, and there are 
masks. And then she said, 'Oh, that's my summer home.' " w 

Dryer says she also sees what look like three-dimensional movies in a 
person's energy field. "Usually they're in color, but they can also be 
brown, or look like tintypes. Often they depict a story about the person 
that can take anywhere from five minutes to an hour to unfold. The 
images are also incredibly detailed. When I see a person sitting in a 
room I can tell them how many plants are in the room, how many leaves 
are on each plant, and how many bricks are in the wall. I usually don't get 
into such minute description unless it seems pertinent. "~ 

I can attest to Dryer's accuracy. I have always been an organized 
person, and when I was a child I was quite precocious in this regard. 
Once when I was five years old f spent several hours meticulously 
storing and organizing all of my toys in a closet. When I was finished I 
showed my mother what I had done and admonished her please not 



to touch anything in the closet because I did not want her messing up 
my carefully ordered arrangements. My mother's account of this inci- 
dent has amused the family ever since. During my first reading with 
Dryer she described this incident in detail, as well as many other events 
in my life, as she watched it unfold like a movie in my energy field. She, 
too, chuckled as she described it. 

Dryer likens the images she sees to holograms and says that when she 
chooses one and starts to watch it, it seems to expand and fill the entire 
room. "If I see something going on with a person's shoulder, such as an 
injury, suddenly the whole scene widens. That's when I get the sense 
that it's a hologram because sometimes I feel I can step right into it and 
be a part of it. It's not happening to me, but around me. It's almost as if 
I'm in a three-dimensional movie, a holographic movie, with the 
person." 8 * 

Dryer's holographic vision is not limited to events from a person's life. 
She sees visual representations of the operations of the unconscious 
mind as well. As we all know, the unconscious mind speaks in a 
language of symbols and metaphors. This is why dreams often seem so 
nonsensical and mysterious. However, once one learns how to interpret 
the language of the unconscious, the meanings of dreams beeome clear. 
Dreams are not the only things that are written in the parlance of the 
unconscious. Individuals who are familiar with the language of the 
psyche — a language psychologist Erich Fromm calls the "forgotten 
language," because most of us have forgotten how to interpret 
it — recognize its presence in other human creations such as myths, fairy 
tales, and religious visions. 

Some of the holographic movies Dryer sees in the human energy field 
are also written in this language and resemble the metaphorical 
messages of dreams. We now know that the unconscious mind is active 
not only while we dream, but all of the time. Dryer is able to peel back a 
person's waking self and gaze directly at the unceasing river of images 
that is always flowing through their unconscious mind. And both 
practice and her natural, intuitive gifts have made her extremely skilled 
at deciphering the language of the unconscious. " Jung-ian psychologists 
love me," says Dryer. 

In addition, Dryer has a special way of knowing whether she has 
interpreted an image correctly. "If I haven't explained it correctly, it 
doesn't go away," she states. "It just stays in the energy field. But once 
I've told the person everything they need to know about a particular 
image, it begins to dissolve and disappear." 27 Dryer thinks this is 

Seeing Holographically 


because it is a client's own unconscious mind that chooses what images 
to show her. Like Ullman, she believes the psyche is always trying to 
teach the conscious self things it needs to know to become healthier and 
happier, and to grow spiritually. 

Dryer's ability to observe and interpret the innermost workings of a 
person's psyche is one of the reasons she is able to effect such profound 
transformations in many of her clients. The first time she described the 
stream of images she saw unfolding in my own energy field, I had the 
uncanny sensation she was telling me about one of my own dreams, save 
that it was a dream I had not yet dreamed. At first the phantasmagoria of 
images was only mysteriously familiar, but as she unraveled and 
explained each symbol and metaphor in turn, I recognized the 
machinations of my inner self, both the things I accepted and the things I 
was less willing to embrace. Indeed, it is clear from the work of psychics 
like Rich and Dryer that there is an enormous amount of information in 
the energy field. One wonders if this is perhaps why Hunt obtained such 
a pronounced chaos pattern when she analyzed data from the aura. 

The ability to see images in the human energy field is not new. Nearly 
three hundred years ago the great Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg 
reported that he could see a "wave-substance" around people, and in the 
wave-substance a person's thoughts were visible as images he called 
"portrayals." In commenting on the inability of other people to see this 
wave-substance around the body, he observed, "I could see solid 
concepts of thought as though they were surrounded by a kind of wave. 
But nothing reaches [normal] human sensation except what is in the 
middle and seems solid. " M Swedenborg could also see portrayals in his 
own energy field: "When I was thinking about someone I knew, then his 
image appeared as he looked when he was named in human presence; 
but all around, like something flowing in waves, was everything I had 
known and thought about him from boyhood." 23 

Holographic Body Assessment 

Frequency is not the only thing that is distributed holographically 
throughout the field. Psychics report that the wealth of personal infor- 
mation the field contains can also be found in every portion of the 



body's aura. As Brennan puts it, "The aura not only represents, but also 
contains, the whole. " so California clinical psychologist Ronald Wong 
Jue agrees. Jue, a former president of the Association for Transpersonal 
Psychology and a talented clairvoyant, has found that an individual's 
history is even contained in the "energy patterns" inherent in the body, 
" The body is a kind of microcosm, a universe unto itself reflecting all of 
the different factors that a person is dealing with and trying to 
integrate," says Jue. 

Like Dryer and Rich, Jue has the psychic ability to tune into movies 
about the important issues in a person's life, but instead of seeing them 
in the energy field, he conjures them up in his mind's eye by laying his 
hands on a person and literally psychometrizing their body. Jue says 
this technique enables him to determine quickly the emotional scripts, 
core issues, and relationship patterns that are most prominent in a 
person's life, and often uses it on his patients to facilitate the therapeutic 
process. "The technique was actually taught to me by a psychiatrist 
colleague of mine named Ernest Pecci," Jue states. "He called it 'body 
reading.' Instead of talking about the etheric body and things like that, I 
chose to use the holographic model as a way of explaining it and call it 
Holographic Body Assessment" 31 In addition to using it in his clinical 
practice, Jue also gives seminars in which he teaches others how to use 
the technique. 

X-Ray Vision 

In the last chapter we explored the possibility that the body is not a solid 
construct, but is itself a kind of holographic image. Another faculty 
possessed by many clairvoyants seems to support this notion, that is, 
the ability to literally look inside a person's body. Individuals who are 
gifted at seeing the energy field can also often adjust their vision and 
see through the flesh and bones of the body as if they were no more than 
layers of colored mist. 

During the course of her research, Karagulla discovered a number of 
people, both in and out of the medical profession, who possessed this 
X-ray vision. One, a woman she identifies as Diane, was the head of a 
corporation. Just before meeting Diane, Karagulla wrote, "For me as a 
psychiatrist to be meeting somebody who was reported to be 

Seeing Holojiraphically 


able to 'see' right through me was a shattering reversal of my usual 
procedures." 82 

Karagulla put Diane through a lengthy series of tests, introducing her 
to people and having her make on-the-spot diagnoses. On one of these 
occasions Diane described a woman's energy field as "wilted" and 
"broken into fragments" and said this indicated she had a serious 
problem in her physical body. She then looked into the woman's body 
and saw that there was an intestinal blockage near her spleen. This 
surprised Karagulla because the woman showed none of the symptoms 
that usually indicated such a serious condition. Nonetheless, the woman 
went to her doctor, and X rays revealed a blockage in the precise area 
Diane had described. Three days later the woman underwent surgery to 
have the life-threatening obstruction removed. 

In another series of tests Karagulla had Diane diagnose patients at 
random in the outpatient clinic of a large New York hospital. After 
Diane made a diagnosis Karagulla would determine the accuracy of her 
observations by referring to the patient's records. On one of these 
occasions Diane looked at a patient unknown to both of them and told 
Karagulla that the woman's pituitary gland {a gland deep in the brain) 
was missing, her pancreas looked as if it was not functioning properly, 
her breasts had been affected but were now missing, she didn't have 
enough energy going through her spine from the waist down, and she 
had trouble with her legs. The medical report on the woman revealed 
that her pituitary gland had been surgically removed, she was taking 
hormones which affected her pancreas, she had had a double mastec- 
tomy due to cancer, an operation on her back to decompress her spinal 
cord and relieve pains in her legs, and her nerves had been damaged, 
making it difficult for her to empty her bladder. 

In case after case Diane revealed that she could gaze effortlessly into 
the depths of the physical body. She gave detailed descriptions of the 
condition of the internal organs. She saw the state of the intestines, the 
presence or absence of the various glands, and even described the 
density or brittleness of the bones. Concludes Karagulla, "Although I 
could not evaluate her findings regarding the energy body, her 
observations of physical conditions correlated with amazing accuracy 
with the medical diagnoses.'™ 

Brennan is also skilled at looking into the human body and calls the 
ability "internal vision." Using internal vision she has accurately diag- 
nosed a wide range of conditions including bone fractures, fibroid 



tumors, and cancer. She says she can often tell the condition of an organ 
by its color: for example, a healthy liver looks dark red, a jaundiced liver 
looks a sickly yellow-brown, and the liver of an individual undergoing 
chemotherapy usually looks green-brown. Like many other psychics 
with internal vision, Brennan can adjust the focus of her vision and even 
see microscopic structures, such as viruses and individual blood cells. 

I have personally encountered several psychics with internal vision 
and can corroborate its authenticity. One psychic I have seen demon- 
strate the ability is Dryer. On one of these occasions she not only 
accurately diagnosed an internal medical problem I was having, but 
offered some startling information of an entirety different nature along 
with it. A few years back I started having trouble with my spleen. To try 
and remedy the situation, I began performing daily visualization 
exercises, seeing images of my spleen in a state of wholeness and health, 
seeing it being bathed in healing light, and so on. Unfortunately, I am a 
very impatient person, and when I did not have overnight success I got 
angry. During my next meditation I mentally scolded my spleen and 
warned it in no uncertain terms that it better start doing what I wanted. 
This incident took place purely in the privacy of my own thoughts, and I 
quickly forgot about it 

A few days later I saw Dryer and asked her if she could look into my 
body and tell me if there was anything I should be aware of (I did not tell 
her about my health problem). Nonetheless, she immediately described 
what was wrong with my spleen and then paused, scowling as if she was 
confused. "Your spleen's very upset about something," she murmured. 
And then suddenly it hit her. "Have you been yelling at your spleen?" I 
sheepishly admitted that I had. Dryer all but threw her hands up. "You 
mustn't do that. Your spleen became ill because it thought it was doing 
what you wanted. That was because you were unconsciously giving it 
the wrong directions. Now that you've yelled at it, it's really confused." 
She shook her head with concern. "Never, never get angry at your body 
or your internal organs," she advised. "Only send them positive 

The incident not only revealed Dryer's skill at looking inside the 
human body, but also seemed to suggest that my spleen has some sort of 
mentality or consciousness all of its own. It reminded me not only of 
Pert's assertion that she no longer knows where the brain leaves off and 
the body begins, but made me wonder if perhaps all of the body's 
subcomponents — glands, bones, organs, and cells — possess 

Seeing Holographicaliy 


their own intelligence? If the body is truly holographic, it may be that 
Pert's remark is more correct than we realize, and the consciousness of 
the whole is very much contained in all of its parts. 

Internal Vision and Shamanism 

In some shamanic cultures internal vision is one of the prerequisites for 
becoming a shaman. Among the Araucanian Indians of Chile and the 
Argentine pampas, a newly initiated shaman is taught to pray 
specifically for the faculty. This is because the shaman's major role in 
Araucanian culture is to diagnose and heal illness, for which internal 
vision is considered essential. '"" Australian shamans refer to the ability as 
the "strong eye," or "seeing with the heart." 31 The Jivaro Indians of the 
forested eastern slopes of the Ecuadorian Andes acquire the ability by 
drinking an extract of a jungle vine called ayahuasca, a plant containing 
a hallucinogenic substance believed to bestow psychic abilities on the 
imbiber. According to Michael Harner, an anthropologist at the New 
School for Social Research in New York who specializes in shamanic 
studies, ayakuasca permits the Jivaro shaman "to see into the body of 
the patient as though it were glass. " 3B 

Indeed, the ability to "see" an illness — whether it involves actually 
looking inside the body or seeing the malady represented as a kind of 
metaphorical hologram, such as a three-dimensional image of a de- 
monic and repulsive creature inside or near the body — is universal in 
shamanic traditions. But whatever the culture in which internal vision is 
reported, its implications are the same. The body is an energy construct 
and ultimately may be no more substantive than the energy field in 
which it is embedded. 

The Energy Field as Cosmic Blueprint 

The idea that the physical body is just one more level of density in the 
human energy field and is itself a kind of hologram that has coalesced 
out of the interference patterns of the aura may explain both the 
extraordinary healing powers of the mind and the enormous control it 
has over the body in general. Because an illness can appear in the 



energy field weeks and even months before it appears in the body, 
many psychics believe that disease actually originates in the energy 
field. This suggests that the field is in some way more primary than the 
physical body and functions as a kind of blueprint from which the body 
gets its structural cues. Put another way, the energy field may be the 
body's own version of an implicate order. 

This may explain Achterberg's and Siegel's findings that patients are 
already "imaging" their illnesses many months before the illnesses 
manifest in their bodies. At present, medical science is at a loss to 
explain how mental imagery could actually create an illness. But, as we 
have seen, ideas that are prominent in our thoughts quickly appear as 
images in the energy field. If the energy field is the blueprint that guides 
and molds the body, it may be that by imaging an illness, even 
unconsciously, and repeatedly reinforcing its presence in the field, we 
are in effect programming the body to manifest the illness. 

Similarly, this same dynamic linkage between mental images, the 
energy field, and the physical body may be one of the reasons imagery 
and visualization can also heal the body. It may even help explain how 
faith and meditation on religious images enable stigmatists to grow 
nail-like fleshy protuberances from their hands. Our current scientific 
understanding is at a loss to explain such a biological capacity, but 
again, constant prayer and meditation may cause such images to 
become so impressed in the energy field that the constant repetition of 
these patterns is finally given form in the body. 

One researcher who believes it is the energy field that molds the body 
and not the other way around is Richard Gerber, a Detroit physician 
who has spent the last twelve years investigating the medical 
implications of the body's subtle energy fields. "The etheric body is a 
holographic energy template that guides the growth and development of 
the physical body," says Gerber. 37 

Gerber believes that the distinct layers some psychics see in the aura 
also play a factor in the dynamic relationship among thought, the 
energy field, and the physical body. Just as the physical body is subor- 
dinate to the etheric, the etheric body is subordinate to the astral/ 
emotional body, the astral/emotional to the mental, and so on, says 
Gerber, with each body functioning as the template for the one before it. 
Thus the subtler the layer of the energy field in which an image or 
thought manifests, the greater its ability to heal and reshape the body. 
"Because the mental body feeds energy into the astral/emotional 

Seeing Holographieally 


body, which then funnels down into the etheric and physical bodies, 
healing a person at the mental level is stronger and produces longer 
lasting results than healing from either the astral or etheric levels," says 
Gerber. 31 * 

Physicist Tiller agrees. "The thoughts that one creates generate 
patterns at the mind level of nature. So we see that illness, in fact, 
eventually becomes manifest from the altered mind patterns through the 
rachet effect — first, to effects at the etheric level and then, ultimately, at 
the physical level [where] we see it openly as disease." Tiller believes 
the reason illnesses often recur is that medicine currently treats only the 
physical level. He feels that if doctors could treat tbe energy field as 
well, they would bring about longer lasting cures. Until then, many 
treatments "will not be permanent because we have not altered the basic 
hologram at the mind and spiritual levels," he states. 33 

In a wide-ranging speculation Tiller even suggests that the universe 
itself started as a subtle energy field and gradually became dense and 
material through a similar rachet effect. As he sees it, it may be that God 
created the universe as a divine pattern or idea. Like the image a psychic 
sees floating in the human energy field, this divine pattern functioned as 
a template, influencing and molding increasingly less subtle levels of 
the cosmic energy field "on down the line via a series of holograms," 
until it eventually coalesced into a hologram of a physical universe. 40 

If this is true, it suggests that the human body is holographic in 
another way, for each of us truly would be a universe in miniature. 
Furthermore, if our thoughts can cause ghostly holographic images to 
form, not only in our own energy fields, but in the subtle energetic 
levels of reality itself, it may help explain how the human mind is able 
to effect some of the miracles we examined in the previous chapter. It 
may even explain synchronicities, or how processes and images from 
the innermost depths of our psyche manage to take form in external 
reality. Again, it may be that our thoughts are constantly affecting the 
subtle energetic levels of the holographic universe, but only emotion- 
ally powerful thoughts, such as the ones that accompany moments of 
crisis and transformation — the kind of events that seem to engender 
Synchronicities — are potent enough to manifest as a series of coinci- 
dences in physical reality. 



A Participatory Reality 

Of course, these processes are not contingent on the subtle energy fields 
of the universe being stratified into rigidly defined layers. They could 
also work even if the subtle fields of the universe are a smooth 
continuum. In fact, given how sensitive these subtle fields are to our 
thoughts, we must be very careful when trying to form set ideas about 
their organization and structure. What we believe about them may in 
fact help mold and create their structure. 

This is perhaps why psychics disagree about whether the human 
energy field is divided into layers. Psychics who believe in dearly 
defined layers may actually be causing the energy field to form itself 
into layers. The individual whose energy field is being observed may 
also participate in this process. Brennan is very frank about this and 
notes that the more one of her clients understands the difference 
between the layers, the clearer and more distinct the layers of their 
energy field become. She admits that the structure she sees in the energy 
field is thus but one system, and others have come up with other systems. 
For example, the authors of the tantras, a collection of Hindu yogic texts 
written during the fourth through sixth centuries A.D., perceived only 
three layers in the energy field. 

There is evidence that the structures clairvoyants inadvertently create 
in the energy field can be remarkably long-lived. For centuries the 
ancient Hindus believed that each chakra also had a Sanskrit letter 
written in its center. Japanese researcher Hiroshi Motoyama, a clinical 
psychologist who has successfully developed a technique for measuring 
the electrical presence of the chakras, says that he first became 
interested in the chakras because his mother, a simple woman with 
natural clairvoyant gifts, could see them clearly. However, for years she 
was puzzled because she could see what looked like an inverted sailboat 
in her heart chakra. It wasn't until Motoyama began his own 
investigations that he discovered what his mother was seeing was the 
Sanskrit letter yam, the letter the ancient Hindus perceived in the heart 
chakra." 11 Some psychics, such as Dryer, say that they also see Sanskrit 
letters in the chakras. Others do not. The only explanation appears to be 
that psychics who see the letters are actually tuning into holographic 
structures long ago imposed on the energy field by the beliefs of the 
ancient Hindus. 

At first glance this notion may seem strange, but it does have a 

Seeing Holographically 


precedent. As we have seen, one of the basic tenets of quantum physics 
is that we are not discovering reality, but participating in its creation. It 
may be that as we probe deeper into the levels of reality beyond the 
atom, the levels where the subtle energies of the human aura appear to 
lie, the participatory nature of reality becomes even more pronounced. 
Thus we must be extremely cautious about saying that we have 
discovered a particular structure or pattern in the human energy field, 
when we may have actually created what we have found. 

Mind and the Human Energy Field 

It is significant that an examination of the human energy field leads one 
to precisely the same conclusion Pribram made after discovering that 
the brain converts sensory import into a language of frequencies. That is, 
that we have two realities: one in which our bodies appear to be concrete 
and possess a precise location in space and time; and one in which our 
very being appears to exist primarily as a shimmering cloud of energy 
whose ultimate location in space is somewhat ambiguous. This 
realization brings with it some profound questions. One is, what 
becomes of mind? We have been taught that our mind is a product of our 
brain, but if the brain and the physical body are just holograms, the 
densest part of an increasingly subtle continuum of energy fields, what 
does this say about the mind? Human energy field research provides an 

Recently a discovery made by neurophysiologists Benjamin Libet 
and Bertram Feinstein at Mount Zion Hospital in San Francisco has 
been causing a stir in the scientific community. Libet and Feinstein 
measured the time it took for a touch stimulus on a patient's skin to reach 
the brain as an electrical signal. The patient was also asked to push a 
button when he or she became aware of being touched. Libet and 
Feinstein found that the brain registered the stimulus in 0.0001 of a 
second after it occurred, and the patient pressed the button 0.1 of a 
second after the stimulus was applied. 

But, remarkably, the patient didn't report being consciously aware of 
either the stimulus or pressing the button for almost 0.5 second. This 
meant that the decision to respond was being made by the patient's 
unconscious mind. The patient's awareness of the action was the slow 
man in the race. Even more disturbing, none of the patients 



Libet and Feinstein tested were aware that their unconscious minds had 
already caused them to push the button before they had consciously 
decided to do so. Somehow their brains were creating the comforting 
delusion that they had consciously controlled the action even though 
they had not. 4 - This has caused some researchers to wonder if free will 
is an illusion. Later studies have shown that one and a half seconds 
before we "decide" to move one of our muscles, such as lift a finger, our 
brain has already started to generate the signals necessary to accomplish 
the movement. 43 Again, who is making the decision, the conscious mind 
or the unconscious mind? 

Hunt does such findings one better. She has discovered that the 
human energy field responds to stimuli even before the brain does. She 
has taken EMG readings of the energy field and EEG readings of the 
brain simultaneously and discovered that when she makes a loud sound 
or flashes a bright light, the EMG of the energy field registers the 
stimulus before it ever shows up on the EEG. What does it mean? "I 
think we have way overrated the brain as the active ingredient in the 
relationship of a human to the world," says Hunt. "It's just a real good 
computer. But the aspects of the mind that have to do with creativity, 
imagination, spirituality, and all those things, I don't see them in the 
brain at all. The mind's not in the brain. It's in that dam field." 44 

Dryer has also noticed that the energy field responds before a person 
consciously registers a response. As a consequence, instead of trying to 
judge her client's reactions by watching their facial expressions, she 
keeps her eyes closed and watches how their energy fields react. "As I 
speak I can see the colors change in their energy field. I can see how 
they feel about what I'm saying without having to ask them. For 
instance, if their field becomes foggy I know they're not understanding 
what I'm telling them," she states. 155 

If the mind is not in the brain, but in the energy field that permeates 
both the brain and the physical body, this may explain why psychics 
such as Dryer see so much of the content of a person's psyche in the 
field. It may also explain how my spleen, an organ not normally as- 
sociated with thought, managed to have its own rudimentary form of 
intelligence. Indeed, if the mind is in the field, it suggests that our 
awareness, the thinking, feeling part of ourselves, may not even be 
confined to the physical body, and as we will see, there is considerable 
evidence to support this idea as well. 

But first we must turn our attention to another issue. The solidity 

Seeing Holographicallv 


of the body is not the only thing that is illusory in a holographic 
universe. As we have seen, Bohm believes that even time itself is not 
absolute, but unfolds out of the implicate order. This suggests that the 
linear division of time into past, present, and future is also just another 
construct of the mind. In the next chapter we will examine the evidence 
that supports this idea as well as the ramifications this view has for our 
lives in the here and now. 



Shamanism and similar mysterious areas of research 
have gained in significance because they postulate 
new ideas about mind and spirit. They speak of 
things like vastly expanding the realm of conscious- 
ness . . . the belief, the knowledge, and even the 
experience that our physical world of the senses is a 
mere illusion, a world of shadows, and that the 
three-dimensional tool we call our body serves only 
as a container or dwelling place for Something infi- 
nitely greater and more comprehensive than that 
body and which constitutes the matrix of the real life. 

— Holger Kahveit Oreamtime 
and fnner Space 

Time Out of Mind 

The "home" of the mind, as of all things, is the implicate order. At this 
level, which is the fundamental plenum for the entire manifest universe, 
there is no linear time. The implicate domain is atemporal; moments are 
not strung together serially like beads on a string. 

■ — Larry Dossey 

Recovering the Soul 

As the man gazed off into space, the room he was in became ghostly and 
transparent, and in its place materialized a scene from the distant past. 
Suddenly he was in the courtyard of a palace, and before him was a 
young woman, olive-skinned and very pretty. He could see her gold 
jewelry around her neck, wrists, and ankles, her white translucent dress, 
and her black braided hair gathered regally under a high square-shaped 
tiara. As he looked at her, information about her life flooded his mind. 
He knew she was Egyptian, the daughter of a prince, but not a pharaoh. 
She was married. Her husband was slender and wore his hair in a 
multitude of small braids that fell down on both sides of his face. 

The man could also fast-forward the scene, rushing through the events 
of the woman's life as if they were no more than a movie. He saw that 
she died in childbirth. He watched the lengthy and intricate steps of her 
embalming, her funeral procession, the rituals that accom- 




panied her being placed in her sarcophagus, and when he finished, the 
images faded and the room once again came back into view. 

The man's name was Stefan Ossowiecki, a Russtan-bom Pole and one 
of the century's most gifted clairvoyants, and the date was February 
14,19S5. His vision of the past had been evoked when he handled a 
fragment of a petrified human foot 

Ossowiecki proved so adept at psychometrizing artifacts that he 
eventually came to the attention of Stanislaw Poniatowski, a professor 
at the University of Warsaw and the most eminent ethnologist in Poland 
at the time. Poniatowski tested Ossowiecki with a variety of flints and 
other stone tools obtained from archaeological sites around the world. 
Most of these Hthics, as they are called, were so nondescript that only a 
trained eye could tell they had been shaped by human hands. They were 
also precertified by experts so that Poniatowski knew their ages and 
historical origins, information he kept carefully concealed from 

It did not matter. Again and again Ossowiecki identified the objects 
correctly, describing their age, the culture that had produced them, and 
the geographical locations where they had been found. On several 
occasions the locations Ossowiecki cited disagreed with the informa- 
tion Poniatowski had written in his notes, but Poniatowski discovered 
that it was always his notes that were in error, not Ossowiecki's 

Ossowiecki always worked the same. He would take the object in his 
hands and concentrate until the room before him, and even his own 
body, became shadowy and almost nonexistent After this transition 
occurred, he would find himself looking at a three-dimensional movie 
of the past He could then go anywhere he wanted in the scene and see 
anything he chose. While he was gazing into the past, Ossowiecki even 
moved his eyes back and forth as if the things he was describing 
possessed an actual physical presence before him. 

He could see the vegetation, the people, and the dwellings in which 
they lived. On one occasion, after handling a stone implement from the 
Magdalenian culture, a Stone Age people who flourished in France 
about 15,000 to 10,000 B.C, Ossowiecki told Poniatowski that Mag- 
dalenian women had very complex hair styles. At the time this seemed 
absurd, but subsequent discoveries of statues of Magdalenian women 
with ornate coiffures proved Ossowiecki right 

Over the course of the experiments Ossowiecki offered over one 
hundred such pieces of information, details about the past that at first 

Time Out of Mind 


seemed inaccurate, but later proved correct He said that Stone Age 
peoples used oil lamps and was vindicated when excavations in 
Dor-dogne, France, uncovered oils lamps of the exact size and style he 
described. He made detailed drawings of the animals various peoples 
hunted, the style of the huts in which they lived, and their burial 
customs — assertions that were all later confirmed by archaeological 
discoveries. 1 

Poniatowski's work with Ossowiecki is not unique. Norman Emerson, 
a professor of anthropology at the University of Toronto and founding 
vice president of the Canadian Archaeological Association, has also 
investigated the use of clairvoyants in archaeological work. Emerson's 
research has centered around a truck driver named George McMullen. 
Like Ossowiecki, McMullen has the ability to psychometrize objects and 
use them to tune into scenes from the past McMullen can also tune into 
the past simply by visiting an archaeological site. Once there, he paces 
back and forth until he gets his bearings. Then he begins to describe the 
people and culture that once flourished at the site. On one such occasion 
Emerson watched as McMullen bounded over a pateh of bare ground, 
pacing out what he said was the location of an Iroquois longhouse. 
Emerson marked the area with survey pegs and six months later 
uncovered the ancient structure exactly where McMullen said it would 
be. 3 

Although Emerson began as a skeptic, his work with McMullen has 
made him a believer. In 1973, at an annual conference of Canada's 
leading archaeologists, he stated, "It is my conviction that I have 
received knowledge about archaeological artifacts and archaeological 
sites from a psychic informant who relates this information to me 
without any evidence of the conscious use of reasoning. " He concluded 
his talk by saying that he felt McMullen's demonstrations opened "a 
whole new vista" in archaeology, and research into the further use of 
psychics in archaeological investigations should be given "first prior- 
ity." 3 

Indeed, retrocognition, or the ability of certain individuals to shift the 
focus of their attention and literally gaze back into the past, has been 
confirmed repeatedly by researchers. In a series of experiments 
conducted in the 1960s, W. H. C. Tenhaeff, the director of the 
Parapsy-chological Institute of the State University of Utrecht, and 
Marius Valkhoff, dean of the faculty of arts at the University of 
Witwaters-rand, Johannesburg, South Africa, found that the great Dutch 
psychic, Gerard Croiset, could psychometrize even the smallest 



of bone and accurately describe its past. 4 Dr. Lawrence LeShan, a New 
York clinical psychologist, and another skeptic-turned-believer, has 
conducted similar experiments with the noted American psychic, Eileen 
Garrett. At the 1961 annua) meeting of the American Anthropological 
Association, archaeologist Clarence W. Weiant revealed that he would 
not have made his famous Tres Zapotes discovery, universally 
considered to be one of the most important Middle American 
archaeological finds ever made, were it not for the assistance of a 
psychic. 6 

Stephan A. Schwartz, a former editorial staff member of National 
Geographic magazine and a member of MITs Secretary of Defense 
Discussion Group on Innovation, Technology, and Society, believes that 
retrocognition is not only real, but will eventually precipitate a shift in 
scientific reality as profound as the shifts that followed the discoveries 
of Copernicus and Darwin. Schwartz feels so strongly about the subject 
that he has written a comprehensive history of the partnership between 
clairvoyants and archaeologists entitled The Secret Vaults of Time. "For 
three-quarters of a century psychic archaeology has been a reality," says 
Schwartz. "This new approach has done much to demonstrate that the 
time and space framework so crucial to the Grand Material world-view 
is by no means as absolute a construct as most scientists believe." 7 

The Past as Hologram 

Such abilities suggest that the past is not lost, but still exists in some 
form accessible to human perception. Our normal view of the universe 
makes no allowance for such a state of affairs, but the holographic 
model does. Bohm's notion that the flow of time is the product of a 
constant series of unfoldings and enfoldings suggests that as the present 
enfolds and becomes part of the past, it does not cease to exist, but 
simply returns to the cosmic storehouse of the implicate. Or as Bohm 
puts it, "The past is active in the present as a kind of implicate order." 8 
If, as Bohm suggests, consciousness also has its source in the impli- 
cate, this means that the human mind and the holographic record of the 
past already exist in the same domain, are, in a manner of speaking, 
already neighbors. Thus, a shift in the focus of one's attention 

Time Out of Mbd 


may be all that is needed to access the past. Clairvoyants such as 
McMulIen and Ossowiecki may simply be individuals who have an 
innate knack for making this shift, but again, as with so many of the 
other extraordinary human abilities we have looked at, the holographic 
idea suggests that the talent is latent in all of us. 

A metaphor for the way the past is stored in the implicate can also be 
found in the hologram. If each phase of an activity, say a woman 
blowing a soap bubble, is recorded as a series of successive images in a 
multiple-image hologram, each image becomes as a frame in a movie. If 
the hologram is a "white light" hologram — a piece of holographic film 
whose image can be seen by the naked eye and does not need laser light 
to become visible — when a viewer walks by the film and changes the 
angle of his or her perception, he/she will see what amounts to a 
three-dimensional motion picture of the woman blowing the soap bub- 
ble. In other words, as the different images unfold and enfold, they will 
seem to flow together and present an illusion of movement. 

A person who is unfamiliar with holograms might mistakenly assume 
that the various stages in the blowing of the soap bubble are transitory and 
once perceived can never be viewed again, but this is not true. The entire 
activity is always recorded in the hologram, and it is the viewer's changing 
perspective that provides the illusion that it is unfolding in time. The 
holographic theory suggests that the same 4 is true of our own past. Instead 
of fading into oblivion, it too remains recorded in the cosmic hologram 
and can always be accessed once again. 

Another suggestively hologramlike feature of the retrocognitive 
experience is the three-dimensionality of the scenes that are accessed. 
For instance, psychic Rich, who can also psychometrize objects, says 
she knows what Ossowiecki meant when he said that the images he saw 
were as three-dimensional and real, even more real, than the room in 
which he was sitting. "It's as if the scene takes over," says Rich. "It's 
dominant, and once it starts to unfold I actually become a part of it. It's 
like being in two places at once. I'm aware that I'm sitting in a room, but 
I'm also in the scene." 8 

Similarly holographic is the nonlocal nature of the ability. Psychics 
are able to access the past of a particular archaeological site both when 
they are at the site and when they are many miles removed. In other 
words, the record of the past does not appear to be stored at any one 
location, but like the information in a hologram, it is nonlocal and can 
be accessed from any point in the space-time framework. The 



cal ruins — burial mounds, standing stones, crumbling sixth-century 
fortresses, and so on — and participated in activities associated with 
bygone times. Evans- Wentz interviewed witnesses who had seen fairies 
that looked like men in Elizabethan dress engaging in hunts, fairies that 
walked in ghostly processions to and from the remains of old forts, and 
fairies that rang bells while standing in the ruins of ancient churches. 
One activity of which the fairies seemed inordinately fond was waging 
war. In his book The Fairy-Faitk in Celtic Countries Evans-Wentz 
presents the testimony of dozens of individuals who claimed to see these 
spectral conflicts, moonlit meadows thronged with men battling in 
medieval armor, or desolate fens covered with soldiers in colored 
uniforms. Sometimes these frays were eerily silent. Sometimes they 
were full-fledged dins; and, perhaps most haunting of all, sometimes 
they could only be heard but not seen. 

From this, Evans-Wentz concluded that at least some of the phe- 
nomena his witnesses were interpreting as fairies were actually some 
kind of afterimage of events that had taken place in the past. "Nature 
herself has a memory," he theorized. "There is some indefinable psychic 
element in the earth's atmosphere upon which all human and physical 
actions or phenomena are photographed or impressed. Under certain 
inexplicable conditions, normal persons who are not seers may observe 
Nature's mental records like pictures cast upon a screen — often like 
moving pictures." 14 

As for why encounters with fairies were becoming less frequent, a 
remark made by one of Evans-Wentz' s respondents provides a clue. The 
respondent was an elderly gentleman named John Davies living on the 
Isle of Man, and after describing numerous sightings of the good people, 
he stated, "Before education came into the island more people could see 
the fairies; now very few people can see them.'" 5 Since "education" no 
doubt included an anathema against believing in fairies, Davies's 
remark suggests that it was a change in attitude that caused the 
widespread retrocognitive abilities of the Manx people to atrophy. Once 
again this underscores the enormous power our beliefs have in 
determining which of our extraordinary potentials we manifest and 
which we do not 

But whether our beliefs allow us to see these hologramlike movies of 
the past or cause our brains to edit them out, the evidence suggests that 
they exist nonetheless. Nor are such experiences limited to Celtic 
countries. There are reports of witnesses seeing phantom soldiers 
dressed in ancient Hindu costumes in India. 16 In Hawaii, such ghostly 

Time Out of Mind 


displays are well known and books on the islands are filled with ac- 
counts of individuals who have seen phantom processions of Hawaiian 
warriors in feather cloaks marching along with war clubs and torches.' 7 
Sightings of spectral armies fighting equally phantasmal battles are 
even mentioned in ancient Assyrian texts. 18 

Occasionally historians are able to recognize the event being replayed. 
At four in the morning on August 4,1951, two English women 
vacationing in the seaside village of Puys, France, were awakened by 
the sound of gunfire. They raced to the window but were shocked to 
find that the village and the sea beyond were calm and devoid of any 
activity that might account for what they were hearing. The British 
Society for Psychical Research investigated and discovered that the 
women's chronology of events mirrored exactly military records of a 
raid the Allies had made against the Germans at Puys on August 19, 
1942. The women, it seemed, had heard the sound of a slaughter that 
had taken place nine years earlier. 19 

Although the dark intensity of such events gives them a higher profile 
in the holographic landscape, we must not forget that contained within 
the shimmering holographic record of the past are all the joys of the 
human race as well. It is, in essence, a library of all that ever was, and 
learning to tap into this dazzling and infinite treasure-trove on a more 
massive and systematic scale could expand our knowledge of both 
ourselves and the universe in ways we have not yet dared dream. The 
day may come when we can manipulate reality like the crystal in 
Bohm's analogy, causing what is real and what is invisible to shift 
kaleidoscopic ally and calling up images of the past with the same ease 
that we now call up a program on our computer. But even this is not all 
that a more holographic understanding of time may offer. 

The Holographic Future 

As disconcerting as having access to the entire past is, it pales beside the 
notion that the future is also accessible in the cosmic hologram. Still, 
there is an enormous body of evidence that proves at least some future 
events are as easy to see as past events. 

This has been amply demonstrated in literally hundreds of studies. In 
the 1930s J. B. and Louisa Rhine discovered that volunteers could guess 
what cards would be drawn randomly from a deck with a sue- 



Time Out of Mind 


cess rate that was better than chance by odds of three million to one." In 
the 1970s Helmut Schmidt, a physicist at Boeing Aircraft in Seattle, 
Washington, invented a device that enabled him to test whether people 
could predict random subatomic events. In repeated tests with three 
volunteers and over sixty thousand trials, he obtained results that were 
one billion to one against chance. 21 

In his work at the Dream Laboratory at Maimonides Medical Center, 
Montague Uliman, along with psychologist Stanley Krippner and re- 
searcher Charles Honorton, produced compelling evidence that accu- 
rate precognitive information can also be obtained in dreams. In their 
study, volunteers were asked to spend eight consecutive nights at the 
sleep laboratory, and each night they were asked to try to dream about a 
picture that would be chosen at random the next day and shown to them. 
Uliman and his colleagues hoped to get one success out of eight, but 
found that some subjects could score as many as five "hits" out of eight. 

For example, after waking, one volunteer said that he had dreamed of 
"a large concrete building" from which a "patient" was trying to escape. 
The patient had a white coat on like a doctor's coat and had gotten only 
''as far as the archway." The painting chosen at random the next day 
turned out to be Van Gogh's Hospital Corridor at SL Remy, a 
watercolor depicting a lone patient standing at the end of a bleak and 
massive hallway and quickly exiting through a door beneath an 

In their remote-viewing experiments at Stanford Research Institute, 
Puthoff and Targ found that, in addition to being able to psychically 
describe remote locations that experimenters were visiting in the 
present, test subjects could also describe locations experimenters would 
be visiting in the future, before the locations had even been decided 
upon. In one instance, for example, an unusually talented subject named 
Hella Hammid, a photographer by vocation, was asked to describe the 
spot Puthoff would be visiting one-half hour hence. She concentrated 
and said she could see him entering "a black iron triangle." The triangle 
was "bigger than a man/' and although she did not know precisely what 
it was, she could hear a rhythmic squeaking sound occurring "about 
once a second." 

Ten minutes before she did this, Puthoff had set out on a half -hour 
drive in the Menlo Park and Palo Alto areas. At the end of the half hour, 
and well after Hammid had recorded her perception of the black iron 
triangle, Puthoff took out ten sealed envelopes containing ten 

different target locations. Using a random number generator, he chose 
one at random. Inside was the address of a small park about six miles 
from the laboratory. He drove to the park, and when he got there he 
found a children's swing — the black iron triangle — and walked into its 
midst. When he sat down in the swing it squeaked rhythmically as it 
swung back and forth. 23 

Puthoff and Targ's precognitive remote -viewing findings have been 
duplicated by numerous laboratories around the world, including Jahn 
and Dunne's research facility at Princeton. Indeed, in 334 formal trials 
Jahn and Dunne found that volunteers were able to come up with 
accurate precognitive information 62 percent of the time. 24 

Even more dramatic are the results of the so-called "chair tests," a 
famous series of experiments devised by Croiset. First, the experi- 
menter would randomly select a chair from the seating plan for an 
upcoming public event in a large hall or auditorium. The hall could be 
located in any city in the world and only events that did not have 
reserved seating qualified. Then, without telling Croiset the name or 
location of the hall, or the nature of the event, the experimenter would 
ask the Dutch psychic to describe who would be sitting in the seat 
during the evening in question. 

Over the course of a twenty -five -year period, numerous investigators 
in both Europe and America put Croiset through the rigors of the chair 
test and found that he was almost always capable of giving an accurate 
and detailed description of the person who would be sitting in the chair, 
including describing their gender, facial features, dress, occupation, and 
even incidents from their past. 

For instance, on January 6, 1969, in a study conducted by Dr. Jule 
Eisenbud, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Colo- 
rado Medical School, Croiset was told that a chair had been ehosen for an 
event that would take place on January 23,1969. Croiset, who was in 
Utrecht, Holland, at the time, told Eisenbud that the person who would 
sit in the chair would be a man five feet nine inches in height who 
brushed his black hair straight back, had a gold tooth in his lower jaw, a 
scar on his big toe, who worked in both science and industry, and 
sometimes got his lab coat stained by a greenish chemical. On January 
23 , 1 969, the man who sat down in the chair, which was in an auditorium 
in Denver, Colorado, fit Croiset's description in every way but one. He 
was not five feet nine, but five feet nine and three-quarters. 25 

The list goes on and on. 



Time Out of Mind 


almost universally stress how important dreaming is in divining the 
future. Even our most ancient writings pay homage to the premonitory 
power of dreams, as is evidenced in the biblical account of Pharaoh's 
dream of seven fat and seven lean cows. The antiquity of such traditions 
indicates that the tendency of premonitions to occur in dreams is due to 
more than just our current skeptical attitude toward precognition. The 
proximity the unconscious mind has to the atem-poral realm of the 
implicate may also play a role. Because our dreaming self is deeper in 
the psyche than our conscious self — and thus closer to the primal ocean 
in which past, present, and future become one — it may be easier for it to 
access information about the future. 

Whatever the reason, it should come as no surprise that other methods 
for accessing the unconscious can also produce precognitive information. 
For example, in the 1 960s Karlis Osis and hypnotist J. Fahler found that 
hypnotized subjects scored significantly higher on precognition tests 
than nonhypnotized subjects. 38 Other studies have also confirmed the 
ESP-enhancing effects of hypnosis. 37 However, no amount of dry 
statistical data has the impact of an example from real life. In his book 
The Future Is Now: The Significance of Precognition, Arthur Osborn 
records the results of a hypnosis-precognition experiment involving the 
French actress Irene Muza. After being hypnotized and asked if she 
could see her future, Muza replied, "My career will be short: I dare not 
say what my end will be: it will be terrible." 

Startled, the experimenters decided not to tell Muza what she had 
reported and gave her a posthypnotic suggestion to forget everything 
she had said. When she awakened from her trance she had no memory 
of what she had predicted for herself. Even if she had known, it would 
not have caused the type of death she suffered. A few months later her 
hairdresser accidentally spilled some mineral spirits on a lighted stove, 
causing Muza's hair and clothing to be set on fire. Within seconds she 
was engulfed in flames and died in a hospital a few hours later. 38 

Hololeaps of Faith 

The events that befell Irene Muza raise an important question. If Muza 
had known about the fate she had predicted for herself, would 

she have been able to avoid it? Put another way, is the future frozen and 
completely predetermined, or can it be changed? At first blush, the 
existence of precognitive phenomena seems to indicate that the former 
jg the case, but this would be a very disturbing state of affairs. If the 
future is a hologram whose every detail is already fixed, it means that 
w e have no free will. We are all just puppets of destiny moving mind- 
lessly through a script that has already been written. 

Fortunately the evidence overwhelmingly indicates that this is not the 
case. The literature is filled with examples of people who were able to 
use their precognitive glimpses of the future to avoid disasters, 
instances in which individuals correctly foresaw the crash of a plane 
and avoided death by not getting on, or had a vision of their children 
being drowned in a flood and moved them out of harm's way just in the 
nick of time. There are nineteen documented cases of people who had 
precognitive glimpses of the sinking of the Titanic — some were 
experienced by passengers who paid attention to their premonitions and 
survived, some were experienced by passengers who ignored their 
forebodings and drowned, and some were experienced by individuals 
who were not in either of these two categories. 39 

Such incidents strongly suggest that the future is not set, but is plastic 
and can be changed. But this view also brings with it a problem. If the 
future is still in a state of flux, what is Croiset tapping into when he 
describes the individual who will sit down in a particular chair 
seventeen days hence? How can the future both exist and not exist? 

Loye provides a possible answer. He believes that reality is a giant 
hologram, and in it the past, present, and future are indeed fixed, at least 
up to a point The rub is that it is not the only hologram. There are many 
such holographic entities floating in the timeless and spaceless waters 
of the implicate, jostling and swimming around one another like so 
many amoebas. " Such holographic entities could also be visualized as 
parallel worlds, parallel universes," says Loye. 

Thus, the future of any given holographic universe is predetermined, 
and when a person has a precognitive glimpse of the future, they are 
tuning into the future of that particular hologram only . But like amoebas, 
these holograms also occasionally swallow and engulf each other, 
melding and bifurcating like the protoplasmic globs of energy that they 
really are. Sometimes these jostlings jolt us and are responsible for the 
premonitions that from time to time engulf us. And when we act upon a 
premonition and appear to alter the future, what We are really doing is 
leaping from one hologram to another. Loye 



Time Out of Mind 


calls these intra holographic leaps "hololeaps" and feels that they are 
what provides us with our true capacity for both insight and freedom. 40 

Bohm sums up the same situation in a slightly different manner. 
"When people dream of accidents correctly and do not take the plane or 
ship, it is not the actual future that they were seeing. It was merely 
something in the present which is implicate and moving toward making 
that future. In fact, the future they saw differed from the actual future 
because they altered it. Therefore I think it's more plausible to say that, 
if these phenomena exist, there's an anticipation of the future in the 
implicate order in the present. As they used to say, coming events cast 
their shadows in the present Their shadows are being cast deep in the 
implicate order."" 1 

Bohm's and Loye's descriptions seem to be two different ways of 
trying to express the same thing — a view of the future as a hologram that 
is substantive enough for us to perceive it, but malleable enough to be 
susceptible to change. Others have used still different words to sum up 
what appears to be the same basic thought. Cordero describes the future 
as a hurricane that is beginning to form and gather momentum, 
becoming more concrete and unavoidable as it approaches. 42 Ingo Swann, 
a gifted psychic who has produced impressive results in various studies, 
including Puthoff and Targ's remote-vie wing research, speaks of the 

future as composed of "crystallizing possibilities. The Hawaiian 

kahunas, widely esteemed for their precognitive powers, also speak of 
the future as fluid, but in the process of "crystallizing," and believe that 
great world events are crystallized furthest in advance, as are the most 
important events in a person's life, such as marriage, accidents, and 
death. 44 

The numerous premonitions that are now known to have preceded 
both the Kennedy assassination and the Civil War (even George Wash- 
ington had a precognitive vision of a future civil war somehow involving 
"Africa," the issue that all men are "brethren," and the word Union ") 
seem to corroborate this kahuna belief. 

Loye's notion that there are many separate holographic futures and 
we choose which events are going to manifest and which are not by 
leaping from one hologram to another carries with it another implica- 
tion. Choosing one holographic future over another is essentially the 
same as creating the future. As we have seen, there is a good deal of 
evidence suggesting that consciousness plays a significant role in 
creating the here and now. But if the mind can stray beyond the 

poundaries of the present and occasionally stalk the misty landscape of 
the future, do we have a hand in creating future events as well? Put 
another way, are the vagaries of life truly random, or do we play a role in 
literally sculpting our own destiny? Remarkably, there is some 
intriguing evidence that the latter may be the case. 

The Shadowy Stuff of the Soul 

Dr. Joel Whitton, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto 
Medical School, has also used hypnosis to study what people 
unconsciously know about themselves. However, instead of asking 
them about their future, Whitton, who is an expert in clinical hypnosis 
and also holds a degree in neurobiology, asks them about their past, their 
distant past to be exact. For the last several decades Whitton has quietly 
and without fanfare been gathering evidence suggestive of 

Reincarnation is a difficult subject, for so much silliness has been 
presented about it that many people dismiss it out of hand. Most do not 
realize that in addition to (and one might even say in spite of) the 
sensational claims of celebrities and the stories of reincarnated 
Cleopatras that garner most of the media attention, there is a good deal 
of serious research being done on reincarnation. In the last several 
decades a small but growing number of highly credentialed researchers 
has compiled an impressive body of evidence on the subject Whitton is 
one of these researchers. 

The evidence does not prove that reincarnation exists, nor is it the 
intention of this book to make such an argument. In fact, it is difficult to 
imagine what might constitute perfect proof of reincarnation. Rather, 
the findings that will be touched upon here are offered only as intriguing 
possibilities and because they are relevant to our current discussion. 
Thus, they deserve our open-minded consideration. 

The main thrust of Whitton's hypnosis research is based on a simple 
and startling fact. When individuals are hypnotized, they often re- 
member what appear to be memories of previous existences. Studies 
nave shown that over 90 percent of all hypnotizable individuals are able 
to recall these apparent memories. 46 The phenomenon is widely 
A cognized, even by skeptics. For example, the psychiatry textbook 
Trauma, Trance and Transformation warns fledgling hypnothera- 



Time Out of Mind 


pists not to be surprised if such memories surface spontaneously in their 
hypnotized patients. The author of the text rejects the idea of rebirth but 
does note that such memories can have remarkable healing 
potential nonetheless." 7 

The meaning of this phenomenon is, of course, hotly debated. Many 
researchers argue that such memories are fantasies or fabrications of the 
unconscious mind, and there is no doubt that this is sometimes the case, 
especially if the hypnotic session or "regression" is conducted by an 
unskilled hypnotist who does not know the proper questioning 
techniques required to safeguard against eliciting fantasies. But there 
are also numerous cases on record in which individuals have, under the 
guidance of skilled professionals, produced memories that do not appear 
to be fantasies. The evidence assembled by Whitton falls into this 

To conduct his research, Whitton gathered together a core group of 
roughly thirty people. These included individuals from all walks of life, 
from truck drivers to computer scientists, some of whom believed in 
reincarnation and some of whom did not. He then hypnotized them 
individually and spent literally thousands of hours recording everything 
they had to say about their alleged previous existences. 

Even in its broad strokes the information was fascinating. One 
striking aspect was the degree of agreement between the subjects' 
experiences. All reported numerous past lives, some as many as twenty 
to twenty -five, although a practical limit was reached when Whitton 
regressed them to what he calls their "caveman existences," when one 
lifetime became indistinguishable from the next. 48 All reported that 
gender was not specific to the soul, and many had lived at least one life 
as the opposite sex. And all reported that the purpose of life was to 
evolve and learn, and that multiple existences facilitated this process. 

Whitton also found evidence that strongly suggested the experiences 
were actual past lives. One unusual feature was the ability the memories 
had to explain a wide range of seemingly unrelated events and 
experiences in the subjects' current lives. For example, one man, a 
psychologist born and raised in Canada, had possessed an inexplicable 
British accent as a child. He also had an irrational fear of breaking his 
leg, a phobia of air travel, a terrible nail-biting problem, an obsessive 
fascination with torture, and as a teenager had had a brief and enigmatic 
vision of being in a room with a Nazi officer, shortly after operating the 
pedals of a car during a driving test. Under hypnosis the 

jdan recalled being a British pilot during World War II. While on a 
mission over Germany his plane was hit by a shower of bullets, one of 
which penetrated the fuselage and broke his leg. This in turn caused pirn 
to lose control of the plane's foot pedals, forcing him to crash-land, jle 
was subsequently captured by the Nazis, tortured for information py 
having his nails pulled out, and died a short time later. 48 

Many of the subjects also experienced profound psychological and 
physical healings as a result of the traumatic past-life memories they 
unearthed, and gave uncannily accurate historical details about the 
times in which they had lived. Some even spoke languages unknown to 
them. While reliving an apparent past life as a Viking, one man, a 
thirty-seven-year-old behavioral scientist, shouted words that linguistic 
authorities later identified as Old Norse. 50 After being regressed to an 
ancient Persian lifetime, the same man began to write in a spidery, 
Arabic-style script that an expert in Near Eastern languages identified 
as an authentic representation of Sassanid Pahlavi, a long-extinct 
Mesopotamian tongue that nourished between A.D. 226 and 651. sl 

But Whitton's most remarkable discovery came when he regressed 
subjects to the interim between lives, a dazzling, light-filled realm in 
which there was "no such thing as time or space as we know it." 52 
According to his subjects, part of the purpose of this realm was to allow 
them to plan their next life, to literally sketch out the important events 
and circumstances that would befall them in the future. But this process 
was not simply some fairy-tale exercise in wish fulfillment. Whitton 
found that when individuals were in the between-life realm, they entered 
an unusual state of consciousness in which they were acutely self-aware 
and had a heightened moral and ethical sense. In addition, they no 
longer possessed the ability to rationalize away any of their faults and 
misdeeds, and saw themselves with total honesty. To distinguish it from 
our normal everyday consciousness, Whitton calls this intensely 
conscientious state of mind "metacon-aciousness." 

Thus, when subjects planned their next life, they did so with a sense 
Qf moral obligation. They would choose to be reborn with people whom 
they had wronged in a previous life so they would have the opportunity 
to make amends for their actions. They planned pleasant encounters 
with "soul mates," individuals with whom they had built a loving a nd 
mutually beneficial relationship over many lifetimes; and they 
scheduled "accidental" events to fulfill still other lessons and pur- 



Time Out of Mind 


poses. One man said that as he planned his next life he visualized "a sort 
of clockwork instrument into which you could insert certain parts in 
order for specific consequences to follow," 68 

These consequences were not always pleasant. After being regressed 
to a metaconscious state, a woman who had been raped when she was 
thirty-seven revealed that she had actually planned the event before she 
had come into this incarnation. As she explained, it had been necessary 
for her to experience a tragedy at that age in order to force her to change 
her "entire soul complexion" and thus break through to a deeper and 
more positive understanding of the meaning of life. 5 " 1 Another subject, 
a man afflicted with a serious and life-threatening kidney disease, 
disclosed that he had chosen the illness to punish himself for a past-life 
transgression. However, he also revealed that dying from the kidney 
disease was not part of his script, and before he had come into this life 
he had also arranged to encounter someone or something that would 
help him remember this fact and hence enable him to heal both his guilt 
and his body. True to his word, after he started his sessions with Whitton 
he experienced a near-miraculous complete recovery. ss 

Not all of Whitton's subjects were so eager to learn about the future 
their metaconscious selves had laid out for them. Several censored their 
own memories and asked Whitton to please give them posthypnotic 
instructions not to remember anything that they had said during trance. 
As they explained, they did not want to be tempted to tamper with the 
script their metaconscious selves had written for them. * 

This is an astounding idea. Is it possible that our unconscious mind is 
not only aware of the rough outline of our destiny, but actually steers us 
toward its fulfillment? Whitton's research is not the only evidence that 
this may be the case. In a statistical study of 28 serious U.S. railroad 
accidents, parapsychoiogist William Cox found that significantly fewer 
people took trains on accident days than on the same day in previous 
weeks/' 7 

Cox's finding suggests that we all may be constantly unconsciously 
precognizing the future and making decisions based on that information: 
some of us opting to avoid mishap, and perhaps some — iike the woman 
who chose to experience a personal tragedy and the man who elected to 
endure a kidney disease — choosing to experience negative situations to 
fulfill other unconscious designs and purposes. "Carefully or 
haphazardly, we choose our earthly circumstances," says Whitton. "The 
message of metaconsciousness is that the life situation 

of every human being is neither random nor inappropriate. Seen objec- 
tively from the interlife, every human experience is simply another 
lesson in the cosmic classroom." 58 

It is important to note that the existence of such unconscious agendas 
does not mean that our lives are rigidly predestined and all fates 
unavoidable. The fact that many of Whitton's subjects asked not to 
remember what they said under hypnosis implies again that the future is 
only roughly outlined and still subject to change. 

Whitton is not the only reincarnation researcher who has uncovered 
evidence that our unconscious has more of a hand in our lives than we 
may realize. Another is Dr. Ian Stevenson, a professor of psychiatry at 
the University of Virginia Medical School. Instead of using hypnosis 
Stevenson interviews young children who have spontaneously re- 
membered apparent previous existences. He has spent more than thirty 
years in this pursuit and has collected and analyzed thousands of cases 
from all over the globe. 

According to Stevenson, spontaneous past-life recall is 
relatively -common among children, so common that the number of 
cases that seem worth considering far exceeds his staffs ability to 
investigate them. Generally children are between the ages of two and 
four when they start talking about their "other life," and frequently they 
remember dozens of particulars, including their name, the names of 
family members and friends, where they lived, what their house looked 
like, what they did for a living, how they died, and even obscure 
information such as where they hid money before they died and, in 
cases involving murder, sometimes even who killed them. 89 

Indeed, frequently their memories are so detailed Stevenson is able to 
track down the identity of their previous personality and verify virtually 
everything they have said. He has even taken children to the area in 
which their past incarnation lived, and watched as they navigated 
effortlessly through strange neighborhoods and correctly identified their 
former house, belongings, and past-life relatives and friends. 

Like Whitton, Stevenson has gathered an enormous amount of data 
suggestive of reincarnation, and to date has published six volumes on 
his findings. 60 And like Whitton, he also has found evidence that the 
unconscious plays a far greater role in our makeup and destiny than we 
have hitherto suspected. 

He has corroborated Whitton's finding that we are frequently reborn 
with individuals we have known in previous existences, and that the 
guiding force behind our choices is often affection or a sense of 

21 S 


Time Out of Mind 


guilt or indebtedness. He agrees that personal responsibility, not 
chance, is the arbiter of our fate. He has found that although a person's 
material conditions can vary greatly from one life to the next, their 
moral conduct, interests, aptitudes, and attitudes remain the same. 
Individuals who were criminals in their previous existence tend to be 
drawn to criminal behavior again; people who were generous and kind 
continue to be generous and kind, and so on. From this Stevenson 
concludes that it is not the outward trappings of life that matter, but the 
inner ones, the joys, sorrows, and "inner growths" of the personality, 
that appear to be most important 

Most significant of all, he found no compelling evidence of "retribu- 
tive karma," or any indication that we are cosmically punished for our 
sins. "There is then — if we judge by the evidence of the cases — no 
external judge of our conduct and no being who shifts us from life to life 
according to our deserts. If this world is (in Keats's phrase) 'a vale of 
soul-making,' we are the makers of our own souls," states Stevenson. 62 

Stevenson has also uncovered a phenomenon that did not turn up in 
Whitton's study, a discovery that provides even more dramatic evidence 
of the power the unconscious mind has to sculpt and influence our life 
circumstances. He has found that a person's previous incarnation can 
apparently affect the very shape and structure of their current physical 
body. He has discovered, for example, that Burmese children who 
remember previous lives as British or American Air Force pilots shot 
down over Burma during World War II all have fairer hair and 
complexions than their siblings. 63 

He has also found instances in which distinctive facial features, foot 
deformities, and other characteristics have carried over from one life to 
the next. 64 Most numerous among these are physical injuries carrying 
over as scars or birthmarks. In one case, a boy who remembered being 
murdered in his former life by having his throat slit still had a long 
reddish mark resembling a scar across his neck. 65 In another, a boy who 
remembered committing suicide by shooting himself in the head in his 
past incarnation still had two scarlike birthmarks that lined up perfectly 
along the bullet's trajectory, one where the bullet had entered and one 
where it had exited. 6 * And in another, a boy had a birthmark resembling 
a surgical scar complete with a line of red marks resembling stitch 
wounds, in the exact location where his previous personality had had 



In fact, Stevenson has gathered hundreds of such cases and is cur- 

rently compiling a four- volume study of the phenomenon. In some of 
the cases he has even been able to obtain hospital and/or autopsy reports 
of the deceased personality and show that such injuries not only 
occurred, but were in the exact location of the present birthmark or 
deformity. He feels that such marks not only provide some of the 
strongest evidence in favor of reincarnation, but also suggest the 
existence of some kind of intermediate nonphysical body that functions 
as a carrier of these attributes between one life and the next He states, "It 
seems to me that the imprint of wounds on the previous personality must 
be carried between lives on some kind of an extended body which in turn 
acts as a template for the production on a new physical body of 
birthmarks and deformities that correspond to the wounds on the body 
of the previous personality .' ?SB 

Stevenson's theorized "template body" echoes Tiller's assertion that 
the human energy field is a holographic template that guides the form 
and structure of the physical body. Put another way, it is a kind of 
three-dimensional blueprint around which the physical body forms. 
Similarly, his findings regarding birthmarks add further support to the 
idea that we are at heart just images, holographic constructs, created by 

Stevenson has also noted that although his research suggests that we are 
the creators of our own lives and, to a certain extent, our own bodies, our 
participation in this process is so passive as to be almost involuntary. 
Deep strata of the psyche appear to be involved in these choices, strata 
that are much more in touch with the implicate. Or as,-Stevenson puts it, 
"Levels of mental activity far deeper than those that regulate the digestion 
of our supper in our stomach [and] our ordinary breathing must govern 
these processes." 09 

As unorthodox as many of Stevenson's conclusions are, his reputation 
as a careful and thorough investigator has gained him respect in some 
unlikely quarters. His findings have been published in such dis- 
tinguished scientific periodicals as the American Journal ofPsyckia-' r V, 
the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, and the International 
Journal of Comparative Sociology. And in a review of one of his works 
the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association stated that 
he has "painstakingly and unemotionally collected a A tailed series of 
cases in which the evidence for reincarnation is oimcult to understand 
on any other grounds. ... He has placed on Word a large amount of data 
that cannot be ignored." 70 



Time Out of Mind 


Thought as Builder 

As with so many of the "discoveries" we have looked at, the idea that 
some deeply unconscious and even spiritual part of us can reach across 
the boundaries of time and is responsible for our destiny can also be 
found in many shamanic traditions and other sources. According to the 
Batak people of Indonesia, everything a person experiences is deter- 
mined by his or her soul, or tondi, which reincarnates from one body to 
the next and is a medium capable of reproducing not only the behavior, 
but the physical attributes of the person's former self. 71 The Ojibway 
Indians also believed a person's Me is scripted by an invisible spirit or 
soul and is laid out in a manner that promotes growth and development. 
If a person dies without completing all the lessons they need to learn, 
their spirit body returns and is reborn in another physical body. 73 

The kahunas call this invisible aspect the aumakua, or "high self." 
Like Whitton's metaconsciousness, it is the unconscious portion of a 
person that can see the parts of the future that are crystallized, or "set." It 
is also the part of us that is responsible for creating our destiny, but it is 
not alone in this process. Like many of the researchers mentioned in this 
book, the kahunas believed that thoughts are things and are composed of 
a subtle energetic substance they called kino mea, or "shadowy body 
stuff." Hence, our hopes, fears, plans, worries, guilts, dreams, and 
imaginings do not vanish after leaving our mind, but are turned into 
thought forms, and these, too, become some of the rough strands from 
which the high self weaves our future. 

Most people are not in charge of their own thoughts, said the kahunas, 
and constantly bombard their high self with an uncontrolled and 
contradictory mixture of plans, wishes, and fears. This confuses the high 
self and is why most people's lives appear to be equally haphazard and 
uncontrolled. Powerful kahunas who were in open communication with 
their high selves were said to be able to help a person remake his or her 
future. Similarly, it was considered extremely important that people take 
time out at frequent intervals to think about their lives and visualize in 
concrete terms what they wished to happen to themselves. By doing this 
the kahunas asserted that people can more consciously control the 
events that befall them and make their own future. Ta 

In an idea that is reminiscent of Tiller and Stevenson's notion of a 

s ubtle intermediary body, the kahunas believed this shadowy body stuff 
also forms a template upon which the physical body is molded. Again it 
was said that kahunas who were in extraordinary attunement vrith their 
high self could sculpt and reform the shadowy body stuff, and hence the 
physical body, of another person and this was how miraculous healings 
were effected. 74 This view also provides an interesting parallel to some 
of our own conclusions as to why thoughts and images have such a 
powerful impact on health. 

The tantric mystics of Tibet referred to the "stuff" of thoughts as tsal 
and held that every mental action produced waves of this mysterious 
energy. They believed the entire universe is a product of the mind and is 
created and animated by the collective tsal of all beings. Most people 
are unaware that they possess this power, said the Tantrists, because the 
average human mind functions "like a small puddle isolated from the 
great ocean." Only great yogis skilled at contacting the deeper levels of 
the mind were said to be able consciously to utilize such forces, and one 
of the things they did to achieve this goal was to visualize repeatedly the 
desired creation. Tibetan tantric texts are filled with visualization 
exercises, or "sadhanas," designed for such purposes, and monks of 
some sects, such as the Kargyupa, would spend as long as seven years in 
complete solitude, in a cave or a sealed room, perfecting their 
visualization abilities. 75 

The twelfth-century Persian Sufis also stressed the importance of 
visualization in altering and reshaping one's destiny, and called the 
subtle matter of thought alam almithal. Like many clairvoyants, 
they believed that human beings possess a subtle body controlled by 
chakralike energy centers. They also held that reality is divided into 
a series of subtler planes of being, or Hadarat, and that the plane of 
being directly adjacent to this one was a kind of template reality in 
which the alam almithal of one's thoughts formed into idea-images, 
which in turn eventually determined the course of one's life. The Sufis 
also added a twist of their own. They felt the heart chakra, or himma, 
was the agent responsible for this process, and that control of the 
heart chakra was therefore a prerequisite for controlling one's des 
tiny. 76 

Edgar Cayce also spoke of thoughts as tangible things, a finer form 
°f matter and, when he was in trance, repeatedly told his clients that 
their thoughts created their destiny and that "thought is the builder." 
n has view, the thinking process is like a spider constantly spinning, 



Time Out of Mind 


constantly adding to its web. Every moment of our lives we are creating 
the images and patterns that give our future energy and shape, said 
Cayce. TT 

Paramahansa Yogananda advised people to visualize the future they 
desired for themselves and charge it with the "energy of concentration." 
As he put it, "Proper visualization by the exercise of concentration and 
willpower enables us to materialize thoughts, not only as dreams or 
visions in the mental realm, but also as experiences in the material 
realm." 78 

Indeed, such ideas can be found in a wide range of disparate sources. 
"We are what we think," said the Buddha. "All that we are arises with 
our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world." 79 "As a man acts, 
so does he become. As a man's desire is, so is his destiny," states the 
Hindu pre-Christian Erihadaranyaka Upani-shad. w "All things in the 
world of Nature are not controlled by Fate for the soul has a principle of 
its own," said the fourth-century Greek 

philosopher lamblicbus. 81 "Ask and it will be given you If ye have 

faith, nothing shall be impossible unto you," states the Bible. 82 And, 
"The destiny of a person is connected with those things he himself 
creates and does," wrote Rabbi Steinsaltz in the kabbalistic 
Thirteen-Petaied Rose. * 

An Indication of Something Deeper 

Even today the idea that our thoughts create our destiny is still very 
much in the air. It is the subject of best-selling self-help books such as 
Shakti Gawain's Creative Visualization and Louise L. Hay's You Can 
Heal Your Life. Hay, who says she cured herself of cancer by changing 
her mental patterning, gives hugely successful workshops on her 
techniques. It is the main philosophy inherent in many popular 
"channeled" works such as A Course in Miracles and Jane Roberts's 
Seth books. 

It is also being embraced by some eminent psychologists. Jean 
Houston, a past president of the Association for Humanistic Psychology 
and current Director of the Foundation for Mind Research in Pomona, 
New York, discusses the idea at length in her book The Possible Human. 
Houston also gives a variety of visualization exercises in the work and 
even calls one "Orchestrating the Brain and Entering the Holoverse."" 4 

Another book that draws heavily on the holographic mode) to support 
the idea that we can use visualization to reshape our future is Mary 
Orser and Richard A. Zarro's Changing Your Destiny. In addition, Zarro 
is the founder of Futureshaping Technologies, a company that gives 
seminars on "futureshaping" techniques to businesses, and numbers 
both Panasonic and the International Banking and Credit Association 
among its clients.* 5 

Former astronaut Edgar Mitchell, the sixth man to walk on the moon 
and a longtime explorer of inner as well as outer space, has taken a 
similar tack. In 1973 he founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences, a 
California-based organization devoted to researching such powers of 
the mind. The institute is still going strong, and current projects include 
a massive study of the mind's role in miraculous healings and 
spontaneous remissions, and a study of the role consciousness plays in 
creating a positive global future. "We create our own reality because 
our inner emotional — our subconscious — reality draws us into those 
situations from which we learn," states Mitchell. "We experience it as 
strange things happening to us [and] we meet the people in our lives that 
we need to learn from. And so we create these circumstances at a very 
deep metaphysical and subconscious level." 8 * 

Is the current popularity of the idea that we create our own destiny' 
just a fad, or is its presence in so many different cultures and times an 
indication of something much deeper, a sign that it is something all 
human beings intuitively know is true? At present this question remains 
unanswered, but in a holographic universe — a universe in which the 
mind participates with reality and in which the innermost stuff of our 
psyches can register as synchronicities in the objective world — the 
notion that we are also the sculptors of our own fate is not so farfetched. 
It even seems probable. 

Three Last Pieces of Evidence 

Before concluding, three last pieces of evidence deserve to be looked 
a t. Although not conclusive, each offers a peek at still other time- 
f&nscending abilities consciousness may possess in a holographic uni- 





Another past-life researcher who turned up evidence suggestive that 
the mind has a hand in creating one's destiny was the late San 
Francisco-based psychologist Dr. Helen Wambach. Wambach's ap- 
s. proach was to hypnotize groups of people in small workshops, regress 
them to specified time periods, and ask them a predetermined list of 
questions about their sex, clothing style, occupation, utensils used to 
eating, and so on. Over the course of her twenty -nine-year investigation 
of the past-life phenomenon, she hypnotized literally thousands of 
individuals and amassed some impressive findings. 

One criticism leveled against reincarnation is that people only seeivi to 
remember past lives as famous or historical personages. Wambach, 
however, found that more than 90 percent of her subjects recalled past 
lives as peasants, laborers, farmers, and primitive food gatherers. Less 
than 10 percent remembered incarnations as aristocrats, and none 
remembered being anyone famous, a finding that argues against the 
notion that past-life memories are fantasies." 7 Her subjects were also 
extraordinarily accurate when it came to historical details, even obscure 
ones. For instance, when people remembered lives in the 1700s, they 
described using a three-pronged fork to eat their evening meals, but 
after 1790 they described most forks as having four prongs, an 
observation that correctly reflects the historical evolution of the fork. 
Subjects were equally accurate when it came to describing clothing and 
footwear, types of foods eaten, et cetera. 88 

Wambach discovered she could also progress people to future lives. 
Indeed, her subjects' descriptions of coming centuries were so fasci- 
nating she conducted a major future-life-progression project in France 
and the United States. Unfortunately, she passed away before com- 
pleting the study, but psychologist Chet Snow, a former colleague of 
Wambach's, carried on her work and recently published the results in a 
book entitled Mass Dreams of the Future. 

When the reports of the 2,500 people who participated in the project 
were tallied, several interesting features emerged. First, virtually all of 
the respondents agreed that the population of the earth had decreased 
dramatically. Many did not even find themselves in physical bodies in 
the various future time periods specified, and those who did noted that 
the population was much smaller than it is today. 

In addition, the respondents divided up neatly into four categories, 
each relating a different future. One group described a joyless and 

Time Out of Mind 


sterile future in which most people lived in space stations, wore silvery 
suits, and ate synthetic food. Another, the "New Agers," reported living 
happier and more natural lives in natural settings, in harmony nitb one 
another, and in dedication to learning and spiritual development. Type 3, 
the "hi-tech urbanites," described a bleak mechanical future in which 
people lived in underground cities and cities enclosed in domes and 
bubbles. Type 4 described themselves as post-disaster survivors living 
in a world that had been ravaged by some global, possibly nuclear, 
disaster. People in this group lived in homes ranging from urban ruins to 
caves to isolated farms, wore plain handsewn clothing that was often 
made of fur, and obtained much of their food by hunting. 

"What is the explanation? Snow turns to the holographic model for the 
answer, and like Loye, believes that such findings suggest that there are 
several potential futures, or holoverses, forming in the gathering mists 
of fate. But like other past-iife researchers he also believes we create our 
own destiny, both individually and collectively, and thus the four 
scenarios are really a glimpse into the various potential futures the 
human race is creating for itself en masse. 

Consequently, Snow recommends that instead of building bomb 
shelters or moving to areas that won't be destroyed by the "coming Earth 
changes" predicted by some psychics, we should spend time believing 
in and visualizing a positive future. He cites the Planetary 
Commission — the ad hoc collection of millions of individuals around 
the world who have agreed to spend the hour of 12:00 to 1:00 P.M., 
Greenwich mean time, each December thirty -first united in prayer and 
meditation on world peace and healing — as a step in the right direction. 
"If we are continually shaping our future physical reality by today's 
collective thoughts and actions, then the time to wake up to the 
alternative we have created is now, " states Snow. "The choices between 
the kind of Earth represented by each of the Types are clear. Which do 
we want for our grandchildren? Which do we want perhaps to return to 
ourselves someday?"" 9 


The future may not be the only thing that can be formed and reshaped 
by human thought. At the 1988 Annual Convention of the 
Parapsychologieal Association, Helmut Schmidt and Marilyn Schlitz 
announced that several experiments they had conducted indicated the 



Time Out of Mind 


mind may be able to alter the past as well. In one study Schmidt and 
Schlitz used a computerized randomization process to record 1,000 
different sequences of sound. Each sequence consisted of 100 tones of 
varying duration, some of them pleasing to the ear and some just bursts 
of noise. Because the selection process was random, according to the 
laws of probability each sequence should contain roughly 50 percent 
pleasing sounds and 50 percent noise. 

Cassette recordings of the sequences were then mailed to volunteers. 
While listening to the prerecorded cassettes the subjects were told to try 
to psychokinetically increase the duration of the pleasing sounds and 
decrease the durations of the noise. After the subjects completed the 
task, they notified the lab of their attempts, and Schmidt and Schlitz then 
examined the original sequences. They discovered that the recordings 
the subjects listened to contained significantly longer stretches of 
pleasing sounds than noise. In other words, it appeared that the subjects 
had psychokinetically reached back through time and had an effect on 
the randomized process from which their prerecorded cassettes had 
been made. 

In another test Schmidt and Schlitz programmed the computer to 
produce 100-tone sequences randomly composed of four different notes, 
and subjects were instructed to try to psychokinetically cause more high 
notes to appear on the tapes than low. Again a retroactive PK effect was 
found. Schmidt and Schlitz also discovered that volunteers who 
meditated regularly exerted a greater PK effect than non-meditators, 
suggesting again that contact with the unconscious is the key to 
accessing the reality-structuring portions of the psyche. 90 

The idea that we can psychokinetically alter events that have already 
occurred is an unsettling notion, for we are so deeply programmed to 
believe the past is frozen as if it were a butterfly in glass, it is difficult 
for us to imagine otherwise. But in a holographic universe, a universe in 
which time is an illusion and reality is no more than a mind-created 
image, it is a possibility to which we may have to become accustomed. 


As fantastic as the above two notions are, they are small change 
compared to the last category of time anomaly that merits our attention. 
On August 10, 1901, two Oxford professors, Anne Moberly, the 
principal of St. Hugh's College, Oxford, and Eleanor Jourdain, the vice 

principal, were walking through the garden of the Petit Trianon at 
Versailles when they saw a shimmering effect pass over the landscape 
in front of them, not unlike the special effects in a movie when it 
changes from one scene to another. After the shimmering passed they 
noticed that the landscape had changed. Suddenly the people around 
them were wearing eighteenth-century costumes and wigs and were 
oehaving in an agitated manner. As the two women stood dumbfounded, 
a repulsive man with a pockmarked face approached and urged them to 
change their direction. They followed him past a line of trees to a 
garden where they heard strains of music floating through the air and 
saw an aristocratic lady painting a watercolor. 

Eventually the vision vanished and the landscape returned to normal, 
but the transformation had been so dramatic that when the women 
looked behind them they realized the path they had just walked down 
was now blocked by an old stone wall. When they returned to England, 
they searched through historical records and concluded that they had 
been transported back in time to the day in which the sacking of the 
Tuileries and the massacre of the Swiss Guards had taken place — which 
accounted for the agitated manner of the people in the garden — and that 
the woman in the garden was none other than Marie Antoinette. So 
vivid was the experience that the women filled a book-length 
manuscript about the occurrence and presented it to the British Society 
for Psychical Research. 91 

What makes Moberly and Jourdain's experience so significant is that 
they did not simply have a retrocognitive vision of the past, but actually 
walked back into the past, meeting people and wandering around in the 
Tuileries garden as it was more than one hundred years earlier. Moberly 
and Jourdain's experience is difficult to accept as real, hut given that it 
provided them with no obvious benefit, and most certainly put their 
academic reputations at risk, one is hard pressed to imagine what would 
motivate them to make up such a story. 

And it is not the only such occurrence at the Tuileries to be reported 
to the British Society for Psychical Research. In May 1955, a London 
solicitor and his wife also encountered several eighteenth-century 
figures in the garden. And on another occasion, the staff of an embassy 
whose offices overlook Versailles claims to have watched the garden 
revert back to an earlier period of history as well. 92 Here in the United 
States parapsychologist Gardner Murphy, a former president of both 
the American Psychological Association and the American Society for 
"sychical Research, investigated a similar case in which a woman 



identified only by the name Buterbaugh looked out the window of her 
office at Nebraska Wesley an University and saw the campus as it was 
fifty years earlier. Gone were the bustling streets and the sorority houses, 
and in their place was an open field and a sprinkling of trees, their leaves 
aflutter in the breeze of a summer long since passed. *~ 

Is the boundary between the present and the past so flimsy that we can, 
under the right circumstances, stroll back into the past with the same 
ease that we can stroll through a garden? At present we simply do not 
know, but in a world that is comprised less of solid objects traveling in 
space and time, and more of ghostly holograms of energy sustained by 
processes that are at least partially connected to human consciousness, 
such events may not be as impossible as they appear. 

And if this seems disturbing — this idea that our minds and even our 
bodies are far less bound by the strictures of time than we have 
previously imagined — we should remember that the idea the Earth is 
round once proved equally frightening to a humanity convinced that it 
was flat. The evidence presented in this chapter suggests that we are still 
children when it comes to understanding the true nature of time. And 
like all children poised on the threshold of adulthood, we should put 
aside our fears and come to terms with the way the world really is. For in 
a holographic universe, a universe in which all things are just ghostly 
coruscations of energy, more than just our understanding of time must 
change. There are still other shimmerings to cross our landscape, still 
deeper depths to plumb. 


Traveling in the 

Access to holographic reality becomes experientiafiy available when 
one's consciousness is freed from its dependence on the physical body. 
So long as one remains tied to the body and its sensory modalities, 
holographic reality at best can only be an intellectual construct. When 
one [is freed from the body] one experiences it directly. That is why 
mystics speak about their visions with such certitude and conviction, 
while those who haven't experienced this realm for themselves are left 
feeling skeptical or even indifferent. 

—Kenneth Ring, Ph.D. 
Life at Death 

Time is not the only thing that is illusory in a holographic universe. 
Space, too, must be viewed as a product of our mode of perception. This 
is even more difficult to comprehend than the idea that time is a 
construct, for when it comes to trying to conceptualize "spacelessness" 
there are no easy analogies, no images of amoeboid universes or 
crystallizing futures, to fall back on. We are so conditioned to think in 
terms of space as an absolute that it is hard for us even to begin to 
imagine what it would be like to exist in a realm in which space did 




Traveling in the Superhologram 


not exist. Nonetheless, there is evidence that we are ultimately no more 
bound by space than we are by time. 

One powerful indication that this is so can be found in out-of-body 
phenomena, experiences in which an individual's conscious awareness 
appears to detach itself from the physical body and travel to some other 
location. Out-of-body experiences, or OBEs, have been reported 
throughout history by individuals from all walks of life. Aldous Huxley, 
Goethe, D. H. Lawrence, August Strindberg, and Jack London a]] 
reported having OBEs. Lhey were known to the Egyptians, the North 
American Indians, the Chinese, the Greek philosophers, the medieval 
alchemists, the Oceanic peoples, the Hindus, the Hebrews, and the 
Moslems. In a cross-cultural study of 44 non- Western societies, Dean 
Shiels found that only three did not hold a belief in OBEs. 1 In a similar 
study anthropologist Erika Bourguignon looked at 488 world socie- 
ties — or roughly 57 percent of all known societies — and found that 437 
of them, or 89 percent, had at least some tradition regarding OBEs." 

Even today studies indicate that OBEs are still widespread. Lhe late 
Dr. Robert Crookall, a geologist at the University of Aberdeen and an 
amateur parapsychologist, investigated enough cases to fill nine books 
on the subject. In the 1960s Celia Green, the director of the Institute of 
Psychophysical Research in Oxford, polled 115 students at South- 
ampton University and found that 19 percent admitted to having an 
OBE. When 380 Oxford students were similarly questioned, 34 percent 
answered in the affirmative. 3 In a survey of 902 adults Haralds-son 
found that 8 percent had experienced being out of their bodies at least 
once in their life." And a 1980 survey conducted by Dr. Harvey Irwin at 
the University of New England in Australia revealed that 20 percent of 
177 students had experienced an OBE. ' When averaged, these figures 
indicate that roughly one out of every five people will have an OBE at 
some point in his or her life. Other studies suggest the incidence may be 
closer to one in ten, but the fact remains: OBEs are far more common 
than most people realize. 

Lhe typical OBE is usually spontaneous and occurs most often during 
sleep, meditation, anesthesia, illness, and instances of traumatic pain 
(although they can occur under other circumstances as well). Suddenly 
a person experiences the vivid sensation that his mind has separated 
from his body. Frequently he finds himself floating over his body and 
discovers he can travel or fly to other locations. What is it like to find 
oneself free from the physical and staring down at one's own body? In a 
1980 study of 339 cases of out-of-body travel, Dr. Glen 

Gabbard of the Menninger Foundation in Lopeka, Dr. Stuart Lwemlow 
of the Lopeka Veterans' Administration Medical Center, and Dr. powler 
Jones of the University of Kansas Medical Center found that a 
whopping 85 percent described the experience as pleasant and over half 
of them said it was joyful. 6 

I know the feeling. I had a spontaneous OBE as a teenager, and after 
recovering from the shock of finding myself floating over my body and 
staring down at myself asleep in bed, I had an indescribably 
exhilarating time flying through walls and soaring over the treetops. 
During the course of my bodiless journey I even stumbled across a 
library book a neighbor had lost and was able to tell her where the book 
was located the next day. I describe this experience in detail in Beyond 
the Quantum. 

It is of no small significance that Gabbard, Lwemlow, and Jones also 
studied the psychological profile of OBEers and found that they were 
psychologically normal and were on the whole extremely well adjusted. 
At the 1980 meeting of the American Psychiatric Association they 
presented their conclusions and told their colleagues that reassurances 
that OBEs are common occurrences and referring the patient to books 
on the subject may be "more therapeutic" than psychiatric treatment. 
Lhey even hinted that patients might gain more relief by talking to a 
yogi than to a psychiatrist! 7 

Such facts notwithstanding, no amount of statistical findings are as 
convincing as actual accounts of such experiences. For example, 
Kimberiy Clark, a hospital social worker in Seattle, Washington, did 
not take OBEs seriously until she encountered a coronary patient 
named Maria. Several days after being admitted to the hospital Maria 
had a cardiac arrest and was quickly revived. Clark visited her later that 
afternoon expecting to find her anxious over the fact that her heart had 
stopped. As she had expected, Maria was agitated, but not for the 
reason she had anticipated. 

Maria told Clark that she had experienced something very strange. 
After her heart had stopped she suddenly found herself looking down 
from the ceiling and watching the doctors and the nurses working on 
her. Lhen something over the emergency room driveway distracted her 
and as soon as she "thought herself there, she was there. Next Maria 
"thought her way" up to the third floor of the building and found herself 
"eyeball to shoelace" with a tennis shoe. It was an old shoe and she 
noticed that the little toe had worn a hole through the fabric. She also 
noticed several other details, such as the fact that the 



Traveling in the Stiperboloiapram 

lace was stuck under the heel. After Maria finished her account she 
begged Clark to please go to the ledge and see if there was a shoe there 
so that she could confirm whether her experience was real or not 

Skeptical but intrigued, Clark went outside and looked up at the ledge, 
but saw nothing. She went up to the third floor and began going in and 
out of patients' rooms looking through windows so narrow she had to 
press her face against the glass just to see the ledge at all. Finally, she 
found a room where she pressed her face against the glass and looked 
down and saw the tennis shoe. Still, from her vantage point she could not 
tell if the little toe had worn a place in the shoe or if any of the other 
details Maria had described were correct. It wasn't until she retrieved the 
shoe that she confirmed Maria's various observations. "The only way she 
would have had such a perspective was if she had been floating right 
outside and at very close range to the tennis shoe," states Clark, who has 
since become a believer in OBEs. "It was very concrete evidence for 
me." 8 

Experiencing an OBE during cardiac arrest is relatively common, so 
common that Michael B. Sabom, a cardiologist and professor of medi- 
cine at Emory University and a staff physician at the Atlanta Veterans' 
Administration Medical Center, got tired of hearing his patients recount 
such "fantasies" and decided to settle the matter once and for all. Sabom 
selected two groups of patients, one composed of 32 seasoned cardiac 
patients who had reported OBEs during their heart attacks, and one 
made up of 25 seasoned cardiac patients who had never experienced an 
OBE. He then interviewed the patients, asking the OBEers to describe 
their own resuscitation as they had witnessed it from the out-of-body 
state, and asking the nonexperiencers to describe what they imagined 
must have transpired during their resuscitation. 

Of the nonexperiencers, 20 made major mistakes when they described 
their resuscitations, 3 gave correct but general descriptions, and 2 had no 
idea at all what had taken place. Among the experiencers, 26 gave correct 
but general descriptions, 6 gave highly detailed and accurate 
descriptions of their own resuscitation, and 1 gave a blow-by-blow 
accounting so accurate that Sabom was stunned. The results inspired him 
to delve even deeper into the phenomenon, and like Clark, he has now 
become an ardent believer and lectures widely on the subject. There 
appears "to be no plausible explanation for the accuracy of these 
observations involving the usual physical senses," he 

says- "The out-of-body hypothesis simply seems to fit best with the data 
at hand." 9 

Although the OBEs experienced by such patients are spontaneous, 
some people have mastered the ability well enough to leave their body a t 
will- One of the most famous of these individuals is a former radio and 
television executive named Robert Monroe. When Monroe had his first 
OBE in the late 1 950s he thought he was going crazy and immediately 
sought medical treatment. The doctors he consulted found nothing 
wrong, but he continued to have his strange experiences and continued 
to be greatly disturbed by them. Finally, after learning from a 
psychologist friend that Indian yogis reported leaving their bodies all 
the time, he began to accept his uninvited talent. "I had two options," 
Monroe recalls. " One was sedation for the rest of my life; the other was 
to learn something about this state so I could control it." 10 

From that day forward Monroe began keeping a written journal of his 
experiences, carefully documenting everything he learned about the 
out-of-body state. He discovered he could pass through solid objects and 
travel great distances in the twinkling of an eye simply by "thinking" 
himseif there. He found that other people were seldom aware of his 
presence, although the friends whom he traveled to see while in this 
"second state" quickly became believers when he accurately described 
their dress and activity at the time of his out-of-body visit. He also 
discovered that he was not alone in his pursuit and occasionally bumped 
into other disembodied travelers. Thus far he has catalogued his 
experiences in two fascinating books, Journeys Out of the Body and Far 

OBEs have also been documented in the lab. In one experiment, 
parapsychologist Charles Tart was able to gei a skilled OBEer he 
identifies only as Miss Z to identify correctly a five-digit number writ- 
ten on a piece of paper that could only be reached if she were floating in 
the out-of-body state. 13 In a series of experiments conducted at the 
American Society for Psychical Research in New York, Karlis Osis and 
psychologist Janet Lee Mitchell found several gifted subjects who were 
able to "fly in" from various locations around the country and correctly 
describe a wide range of target images, including objects placed on a 
table, colored geometric patterns placed on a free-floating shelf near the 
ceiling, and optical illusions that could only be seen when an observer 
peered through a small window in a special device. u Dr. Robert Morris, 
the director of research at the Psychical Research 



Traveling in the Superholograrn 


Foundation in Durham, North Carolina, has even used animals to detect 
out-of-body visitations. In one experiment, for instance, Morris found 
that a kitten belonging to a talented out-of-body subject named Keith 
Harary consistently stopped meowing and started purring whenever 
Harary was invisibly present. 15 

OBEs as a Holographic Phenomenon 

Considered as a whole the evidence seems unequivocal. Although we 
are taught that we "think" with our brains, this is not always true. Under 
the right circumstances our consciousness — the thinking, perceiving 
part of us — can detach from the physical body and exist just about 
anywhere it wants to. Our current scientific understanding cannot 
account for this phenomenon, but it becomes much more tractable in 
terms of the holographic idea, 

A Remember that in a holographic universe, location is itself an illu- 
sion. Just as an image of an apple has no specific location on a piece of 
holographic film, in a universe that is organized holographically things 
and objects also possess no definite location; everything is ultimately 
nonlocal, including consciousness. Thus, although our consciousness 
appears to be localized in our heads, under certain conditions it can just 
as easily appear to be localized in the upper corner of the room, 
hovering over a grassy lawn, or floating eyeball-to-shoelace with a 
tennis shoe on the third-floor ledge of a building. 

If the idea of a nonlocal consciousness seems difficult to grasp, a 
useful analogy can once again be found in dreaming. Imagine that you 
are dreaming you are attending a crowded art exhibit. As you wander 
among the people and gaze at the artworks, your consciousness appears 
to be localized in the head of the person you are in the dream. But where 
is your consciousness really? A quick analysis will reveal that it is 
actually in everything in the dream, in the other people attending the 
exhibit, in the artworks, even in the very space of the dream. In a dream, 
location is also an illusion because everything — people, objects, space, 
consciousness, and so on — is unfolding out of the deeper and more 
fundamental reality of the dreamer. 

Another strikingly holographic feature of the OBE is the plasticity of 
the form a person assumes once they are out of the body. After 
detaching from the physical, OBEers sometimes find themselves in a 

ghostlike body that is an exact replica of their biological body. This 
caused some researchers in the past to postulate that human beings 
possess a "phantom double" not unlike the doppelganger of literature. 

However, recent findings have exposed problems with this assump- 
tion. Although some OBEers describe this phantom double as naked, 
others find themselves in bodies that are fully clothed. This suggests 
that the phantom double is not a permanent energy replica of the 
biological body, but is instead a kind of hologram that can assume 
many shapes. This notion is borne out by the fact that phantom doubles 
are not the only forms people find themselves in during OBEs. There 
are numerous reports where people have also perceived themselves as 
balls of light, shapeless clouds of energy, and even no discernible form 
at all. 

There is even evidence that the form a person assumes during an 
OBE is a direct consequence of their beliefs and expectations. For 
example, in his 1961 book The Mystical Life, mathematician J. H. M. 
Whiteman revealed that he experienced at least two OBEs a month 
during most of his adult life and recorded over two thousand such 
incidents. He also disclosed that he always felt like a woman trapped in 
a man's body, and during separation this sometimes resulted in his 
finding himself in female form. Whiteman experienced various other 
forms as well during his OB adventures, including children's bodies, 
and concluded that beliefs, both conscious and unconscious, were the 
determining factors in the form this second body assumed. A 

Monroe agrees and asserts that it is our "thought habits" that create 
our OB forms. Because we are so habituated to being in a body, we have 
a tendency to reproduce the same form in the OB state. Similarly, he 
believes it is the discomfort most people feel when they are naked that 
causes OBEers to unconsciously sculpt clothing for themselves when 
they assume a human form. "I suspect that one may modify the Second 
Body into whatever form is desired," says Monroe. 16 

What is our true form, if any, when we are in the disembodied state? 
Monroe has found that once we drop all such disguises, we are at heart a 
"vibrational pattern [comprised] of many interacting and resonating 
frequencies." 10 This finding is also remarkably suggestive that some- 
thing holographic is going on and offers further evidence that we — like 
all things in a holographic universe — are ultimately a frequency phe- 
nomenon which our mind converts into various holographic forms. It 
also adds credence to Hunt's conclusion that our consciousness is 



contained, not in the brain, but in a plasmic holographic energy field 
that both permeates and surrounds the physical body. 

The form we assume while in the OB state is not the only thing that 
displays this holographic plasticity. Despite the accuracy of the obser- 
vations made by talented OB travelers during their disembodied j aunts, 
researchers have long been troubled by some of the glaring inaccuracies 
that crop up as well. For instance, the title of the lost library book I 
stumbled across during my own OBE looked bright green while I was in 
a disembodied state. But after I was back in my physical body and 
returned to retrieve the book I saw that the lettering was actually black. 
The literature is filled with accounts of similar discrepancies, instances 
in which OB travelers accurately described a distant room full of people, 
save that they added an extra person or perceived a couch where there 
was reaily a table. 

In terms of the holographic idea, one explanation may be that such 
OB travelers have not yet fully developed the ability to convert the 
frequencies they perceive while in a disembodied state into a com- 
pletely accurate holographic representation of consensus reality. In 
other words, since OBEers appear to be relying on a completely new set 
of senses, these senses may still be wobbly and not yet proficient at the 
art of converting the frequency domain into a seemingly objective 
construct of reality. 

These nonphysica! senses are further hampered by the constraints our 
own self-limiting beliefs place upon them. A number of talented OB 
travelers have noted that once they became more at home in their 
second body they discovered that they could "see" in all directions at 
once without turning their heads. In other words, although seeing in all 
directions appears to be normal during the OB state, they were so 
accustomed to believing that they could see only through their 
eyes-even when they were in a nonphysical hologram of their 
body — that this belief at first kept them from realizing that they 
possessed 360-degree vision. 

There is evidence that even our physical senses have fallen victim to 
this censorship. Despite our unwavering conviction that we see with our 
eyes, reports persist of individuals who possess "eyeless sight," or the 
ability to see with other areas of their bodies. Recently David Eisenberg, 
M.D., a clinical research fellow at the Harvard Medical School, 
published an account of two school-age Chinese sisters in Beijing who 
can "see" well enough with the skin in their armpits to read notes and 
identify colors. 17 In Italy the neurologist Cesare Lom- 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


broso studied a blind girl who could see with the tip of her nose and the 
lobe of her left ear. 1 * In the 1960s the prestigious Soviet Academy of 
Science investigated a Russian peasant woman named Rosa Kule-shova, 
who could see photographs and read newspapers with the tips of her 
fingers, and pronounced her abilities genuine. Significantly, the Soviets 
ruled out the possibility that Kuleshova was simply detecting the 
varying amounts of stored heat different colors emanate natu- 
rally — Kuleshova could read a black and white newspaper even when it 
was covered with a sheet of heated glass. Kuleshova became so 
renowned for her abilities that Life magazine eventually published an 
article about her. 20 

In short, there is evidence that we too are not limited to seeing only 
through our physical eyes. This is, of course, the message inherent in 
my father's friend Tom's ability to read the inscription on a watch even 
when it was shielded by his daughter's stomach, and also in the re- 
mote-viewing phenomenon. One cannot help but wonder if eyeless 
sight is actually just further evidence that reality is indeed maya, an 
illusion, and our physical body, as well as al! the seeming absoluteness 
of its physiology, is as much a holographic construct of our perception 
as our second body. Perhaps we are so deeply habituated to believing 
that we can see only through our eyes that even in the physical we have 
shut ourselves off from the full range of our perceptual capabilities. 

Another holographic aspect of OBEs is the blurring of the division 
between past and future that sometimes occurs during such experiences. 
For example, Osis and Mitchell discovered that when Dr. Alex Tanous, 
a well-known psychic and talented OB traveler from Maine, flew in and 
attempted to describe the test objects they placed on a table, he had a 
tendency to describe items that were placed there days later.' 21 This 
suggests that the realm people enter during the OB state is one of the 
subtler levels of reality Bohm speaks about, a region that is closer to the 
implicate and hence closer to the level of reality in which the division 
between past, present, and future ceases to exist. Put another way, it 
appears that instead of tuning into the frequencies that encode the 
present, Tanous's mind inadvertently tuned into frequencies that 
contained information about the future and converted those into a 
hologram of reality. 

That Tanous's perception of the room was a holographic phenomenon 
and not just a precognitive vision that took place solely in his head ' s 
underscored by another fact. The day of his schedule to produce an 



OBE Osis asked New York psychic Christine Whiting to hold vigil in 
the room and try to describe any projector she might "see" visiting there. 
Despite Whiting's ignorance of who would be flying in or when, when 
Tanous made his OB visit she saw his apparition clearly and described 
him as wearing brown corduroy pants and a white cotton shirt, the 
clothing Dr. Tanous was wearing in Maine at the time of his attempt." 

Harary has also made occasional OB journeys into the future and 
agrees that the experiences are qualitatively different from other 
pre-cognitive experiences. "OBEs to future time and space differ from 
regular precognitive dreams in that I am definitely 'out' and moving 
through a black, dark area that ends at some lighted future scene," he 
states. When he makes an OB visit to the future he has sometimes even 
seen a silhouette of his future self in the scene, and this is not all. When 
the events he has witnessed eventually come to pass, he can also sense 
his time-traveling OB self in the actual scene with him. He describes this 
eerie sensation as "meeting myself 'behind' myself as if I were two 
beings," an experience that surely must put normal deja vus to shame. 23 

There are also cases on record of OB journeys into the past. The 
Swedish playwright August Strindberg, himself a frequent OB traveler, 
describes one in his book Legends. The occurrence took place while 
Strindberg was sitting in a wine shop, trying to persuade a young friend 
not to give up his military career. To bolster his argument Strindberg 
brought up a past incident involving both of them that had taken place 
one evening in a tavern. As the playwright proceeded to describe the 
event he suddenly "lost consciousness" only to find himself sitting in the 
tavern in question and reliving the occurrence. The experience lasted 
only for a few moments, and then he abruptly found himself back in his 
body and in the present. 24 The argument can also be made that the 
retrocognitive visions we examined in the last chapter in which 
clairvoyants had the experience that they were actually present during, 
and even "floating" over, the historical scenes they were describing are 
also a form of OB projection into the past. 

Indeed, when one reads the voluminous literature now available on 
the OB phenomenon, one is repeatedly struck at the similarities between 
OB travelers' descriptions of their experiences and characteristics we 
have now come to associate with a holographic universe. In 

Traveling in the Superhologram_ 


addition to describing the OB state as a place where time and space B o 
longer properly exist, where thought can be transformed into holo- 
gramlike forms, and where consciousness is ultimately a pattern of 
vibrations, or frequencies, Monroe notes that perception during OBEs 
seems based less on "a reflection of light waves" and more on "an 
impression of radiation," an observation that suggests once again that 
when one enters the OB realm one begins to enter Pribram's frequency 
domain. 25 Other OB travelers have also referred to the frequency like 
quality of the Second State. For instance, Marcel Louis Forhan, a 
French OB experiencer who wrote under the name of " Yram," spends 
much of his book, Practical Astral Projection, trying to describe the 
wavelike and seemingly electromagnetic qualities of the OB realm. Still 
others have commented on the sense of cosmic unity one experiences 
during the state and have summarized it as a feeling that "everything is 
everything," and "I am that" 26 

As holographic as the OBE is, it is only the tip of the iceberg when it 
comes to more direct experience of the frequency aspects of reality. 
Although OBEs are only experienced by a segment of the human race, 
there is another circumstance under which we all come into closer 
contact with the frequency domain. That is when we journey to that 
undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns. The rub, 
with all due respect to Shakespeare, is that some travelers do return. 
And the stories they tell are filled with features that smack once again of 
tilings holographic. 

The Near-Death Experience 

By now, nearly everyone has heard of near-death experiences, or NDEs, 
incidents in which individuals are declared clinically "dead," are 
resuscitated, and report that during the experience they left their 
physical body and visited what appeared to be the realm of the afterlife. 
In our own culture NDEs first came to prominence in 1975 when 
Raymond A. Moody, Jr., a psychiatrist who also has a Ph.D. in philoso- 
phy, published his best-selling investigation of the subject, Life after 
Life. Shortly thereafter Elisabeth Kubler-Ross revealed that she had 
simultaneously conducted similar research and had duplicated Moody's 
findings. Indeed, as more and more researchers began to 



document the phenomenon it became increasingly clear that NDEs were 
not only incredibly widespread — a 1981 Gallup poll found that eight 
million adult Americans had experienced an NDE, or roughly one 
person in twenty — but provided the most compelling evidence to date 
for survival after death. 

Like OBEs, NDEs appear to be a universal phenomenon. They are 
described at length in both the eighth-century Tibetan Book of the Dead 
and the 2,500-year-oid Egyptian Book of the Dead. In Book X of The 
Republic Plato gives a detailed account of a Greek soldier named Er, 
who came alive just seconds before bis funeral pyre was to be lit and 
said that he had left his body and went through a "passageway" to the 
land of the dead. The Venerable Bede gives a similar account in his 
eighth-century work A History of the English Church and People, and, 
in fact, in her recent book Otherworld Journeys Carol Zaleski, a lecturer 
on the study of religion at Harvard, points out that medieval literature is 
filled with accounts of NDEs. 

NDEers also have no unique demographic characteristics. Various 
studies have shown that there is no relationship between NDEs and a 
person's age, sex, marital status, race, religion and/or spiritual beliefs, 
social class, educational level, income, frequency of church attendance, 
size of home community, or area of residence. NDEs, like lightning, can 
strike anyone at any time. The devoutly religious are no more likely to 
have an NDE than nonbelievers. 

One of the most interesting aspects of the ND phenomenon is the 
consistency one finds from experience to experience. A summary of a 
typical NDE is as follows: 

A man is dying and suddenly finds himself floating above his body and 
watching what is going on. Within moments he travels at great speed 
through a darkness or a tunnel. He enters a realm of dazzling light and is 
warmly met by recently deceased friends and relatives. Frequently he 
hears indescribably beautiful music and sees sights — rolling meadows, 
flower-filled valleys, and sparkling streams — more lovely than anything 
he has seen on earth. In this light-filled world he feels no pain or fear and is 
pervaded with an overwhelming feeling of joy, love, and peace. He 
meets a "being (and or beings) of light" who emanates a feeling of 
enormous compassion, and is prompted by the being{s) to experience a 
"life review," a panoramic replay of his life. He becomes so enraptured 
by his experience of this greater reality that he desires nothing more 
than to stay. However, the being tells him that it is not his time yet and 
persuades him to return to his earthly life and reenter his physical body. 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


It should be noted this is only a general description and not all NDEs 
contain all of the elements described. Some may lack some of the 
above-mentioned features, and others may contain additional ingredi- 
ents. The symbolic trappings of the experiences can also vary. For 
example, although NDEers in Western cultures tend to enter the realm 
of the afterlife by passing through a tunnel, experiences from other 
cultures might walk down a road or pass over a body of water to arrive 
in the world beyond. 

Nevertheless, there is an astonishing degree of agreement among the 
NDEs reported by various cultures throughout history. For instance, the 
life review, a feature that crops up again and again in modem-day NDEs, 
is also described in the Tibetan Book of the Dead, the Egyptian Book of 
the Dead, in Plato's account of what Er experienced during his sojourn in 
the hereafter, and in the 2,000-year-old yogic writings of the Indian sage 
Patanjali. The cross-cultural similarities between NDEs has also been 
confirmed in formal study. In 1977, Osis and Haraldsson compared 
nearly nine hundred deathbed visions reported by patients to doctors and 
other medical personnel in both India and the United States and found 
that although there were various cultural differences — for example, 
Americans tended to view the being of light as a Christian religious 
personage and Indians perceived it to be a Hindu one — the "core" of the 
experience was substantially the same and resembled the NDEs 
described by Moody and Kubler- 
Ross. 27 

Although the orthodox view of NDEs is that they are just hallucina- 
tions, there is substantial evidence that this is not the case. As with OBEs, 
when NDEers are out-of-body, they are able to report details they have 
no normal sensory means of knowing. For example, Moody reports a 
case in which a woman left her body during surgery, floated into the 
waiting room, and saw that her daughter was wearing mismatched plaids. 
As it turned out, the maid had dressed the little girl so hastily she had not 
noticed the error and was astounded when the mother, who did not 
physically see the little girl that day, commented on the fact, 28 In another 
case, after leaving her body, a female NDEer went to the hospital lobby 
and overheard her brother-in-law tell a friend that it looked like he was 
going to have to cancel a business trip and instead be one of his 
sister-in-law's pallbearers. After the woman recovered, she reprimanded 
her astonished brother-in-law for writing her off so quickly. 29 

And these are not even the most extraordinary examples of sensory 



Traveling ic the SuperhologTam 


awareness in the ND out-of-body state. NDE researchers have found 
that even patients who are blind, and have had no light perception for 
years, can see and accurately describe what is going on around them 
when they have left their bodies during an NDE. Kubler-Ross has 
encountered several such individuals and has interviewed them at length 
to determine their accuracy. 'To our amazement, they were able to 
describe the color and design of clothing and jewelry the people present 
wore," she states. 30 

Most staggering of all are those NDEs and deathbed visions involv- 
ing two or more individuals. In one case, as a female NDEer found 
herself moving through the tunnel and approaching the realm of light, 
she saw a friend of hers coming back! As they passed, the friend 
telepathically communicated to her that he had died, but was being 
"sent back." The woman, too, was eventually "sent back" and after she 
recovered she discovered that her friend had suffered a cardiac arrest at 
approximately the same time of her own experience. 31 

There are numerous other cases on record in which dying individuals 
knew who was waiting for them in the world beyond before news of the 
person's death arrived through normal channels. 32 

And if there is still any doubt, yet another argument against the idea 
that NDEs are hallucinations is their occurrence in patients who have 
flat EEGs. Under normal circumstances whenever a person talks, thinks, 
imagines, dreams, or does just about anything else, their EEG registers 
an enormous amount of activity. Even hallucinations measure on the 
EEG. But there are many eases in which people with flat EEGs have 
had NDEs. Had their NDEs been simple hallucinations, they would 
have registered on their EEGs. 

In brief, when all these facts are considered together — the wide- 
spread nature of the NDE, the absence of demographic characteristics, 
the universality of the core experience, the ability of NDEers to see and 
know things they have no normal sensory means of seeing and knowing, 
and the occurrence of NDEs in patients who have flat EEGs — the 
conclusion seems inescapable: People who have NDEs are not suffering 
from hallucinations or delusional fantasies, but are actually making 
visits to an entirely different level of reality. 

This is also the conclusion reached by many NDE researchers. One 
such researcher is Dr. Melvin Morse, a pediatrician in Seattle, Wash- 
ington. Morse first became interested in NDEs after treating a 
seven-year-old drowning victim. By the time the little girl was 
resuscitated she was profoundly comatose, had fixed and dilated pupils, 
no muscle 

reflexes, and no cornea) response. In medical terms this gave her a 
Glascow Coma Score of three, indicating that she was in a coma so 
deep she had almost no chance of ever recovering. Despite these odds, 
she made a full recovery and when Morse looked in on her for the first 
time after she regained consciousness she recognized him and said that 
she had watched him working on her comatose body. When Morse 
questioned her further she explained that she had left her body and 
passed through a tunnel into heaven where she had met "the Heavenly 
Father." The Heaveniy Father told her she was not really meant to be 
there yet and asked if she wanted to stay or go back. At first she said she 
wanted to stay, but when the Heavenly Father pointed out that that 
decision meant she would not be seeing her mother again, she changed 
her mind and returned to her body. 

Morse was skeptical but fascinated and from that point on set out to 
learn everything he could about NDEs. At the time, he worked for an air 
transport service in Idaho that carried patients to the hospital, and this 
afforded him the opportunity to talk with scores of resuscitated children. 
Over a ten-year period he interviewed every child survivor of cardiac 
arrest at the hospital, and over and over they told him the same thing. 
After going unconscious they found themselves outside their bodies, 
watched the doctors working on them, passed through a tunnel, and 
were comforted by luminous beings. 

Morse continued to be skeptical, and in his increasingly desperate 
search for some logical explanation he read everything he could find on 
the side effects of the drugs his patients were taking, and explored 
various psychological explanations, but nothing seemed to fit. "Then 
one day I read a long article in a medical journal that tried to explain 
NDEs as being various tricks of the brain," says Morse. "By then I had 
studied NDEs extensively and none of the explanations that this 
researcher listed made sense. It was finally clear to me that he had 
missed the most obvious explanation of all — NDEs are real. He had 
missed the possibility that the soul really does travel." 33 

Moody echoes the sentiment and says that twenty years of research 
have convinced him that NDEers have indeed ventured into another 
level of reality. He believes that most other NDE researchers feel the 
same. "I have talked to almost every NDE researcher in the world about 
his or her work. I know that most of them believe in their hearts that 
NDEs are a glimpse of life after life. But as scientists and people °f 
medicine, they still haven't come up with 'scientific proof that a part of 
us goes on living after our physical being is dead. This lack of proof 



Traveling in the Superhologram 


keeps them from going public with their true feelings." 3 " 

As a result of his 1981 survey, even George Gallup, Jr., the president 
of the Gallup Poll, agrees: "A growing number of researchers have been 
gathering and evaluating the accounts of those who have had strange 
near-death encounters. And the preliminary results have been highly 
suggestive of some sort of encounter with an extradimensional realm of 
reality. Our own extensive survey is the latest in these studies and is also 
uncovering some trends that point toward a super parallel universe of 

some sort 


A Holographic Explanation of the 
Near-Death Experience 

These are astounding assertions. What is even more astounding is that 
the scientific establishment has for the most part ignored both the 
conclusions of these researchers and the vast body of evidence that 
compels them to make such statements. The reasons for this are complex 
and varied. One is that it is currently not fashionable in science to 
consider seriously any phenomenon that seems to support the idea of a 
spiritual reality, and, as mentioned at the beginning of this book, beliefs 
are like addictions and do not surrender their grip easily. Another reason, 
as Moody mentions, is the widespread prejudice among scientists that 
the only ideas that have any value or significance are those that can be 
proven in a strict scientific sense. Yet another is the inability of our 
current scientific understanding of reality even to begin to explain NDEs 
if they are real. 

This last reason, however, may not be the problem it seems. Several 
NDE researchers have pointed out that the holographic model offers us a 
way to understand these experiences. One such researcher is Dr. 
Kenneth Ring, a professor of psychology at the University of Connect- 
icut and one of the first NDE researchers to use statistical analysis and 
standardized interviewing techniques to study the phenomenon. In his 
1980 book Life at Death, Ring spends considerable time arguing in 
favor of a holographic explanation of the NDE. Put bluntly, Ring 
beiieves that NDEs are also ventures into the more frequencylike 
aspects of reality. 

Ring bases his conclusion on the numerous suggestively holo- 

graphic aspects of the NDE. One is the tendency of experiences to 
describe the world beyond as a realm composed of "light," "higher 
vibrations," or "frequencies." Some NDEers even refer to the celestial 
music that often accompanies such experiences as more "a combination 
of vibrations" than actual sounds — observations that Ring believes are 
evidence that the act of dying involves a shift of consciousness away 
from the ordinary world of appearances and into a more holographic 
reality of pure frequency. NDEers also frequently say that the realm is 
suffused with a light more brilliant than any they have ever seen on earth, 
but one that, despite its unfathomable intensity, does not hurt the eyes, 
characterizations that Ring feels are further evidence of the frequency 
aspects of the hereafter. 

"Another feature Ring finds undeniably holographic is NDEers' de- 
scriptions of time and space in the afterlife realm. One of the most 
commonly reported characteristics of the world beyond is that it is a 
dimension in which time and space cease to exist. "I found myself in a 
space, in a period of time, I would say, where all space and time was 
negated," says one NDEer clumsily. 36 "It has to be out of time and space. 
It must be, because ... it can't be put into a time thing," says another. 37 
Given that time and space are collapsed and location has no meaning in 
the frequency domain, this is precisely what we would expect to find if 
NDEs take place in a holographic state of consciousness, says Ring. 

If the near-death realm is even more frequency like than our own level 
of reality, why does it appear to have any structure at all? Given that 
both OBEs and NDEs offer ample evidence that the mind can exist 
independently of the brain, Ring believes it is not too farfetched to 
assume that it, too, functions holographically. Thus, when the mind is in 
the "higher" frequencies of the near-death dimension, it continues to do 
what it does best, translate those frequencies into a world of appearances. 
Or as Ring puts it, "I believe that this is a realm that is created by 
interacting thought structures. These structures or 'thought-forms' 
combine to form patterns, just as interference waves form patterns on a 
holographic plate. And just as the holographic image appears to be fully 
real when illuminated by a laser beam, so the images produced by 
interacting thought-forms appear to be real." 3 * 

Ring is not alone in his speculations. In the keynote address for the 
1 989 meeting of the International Association for Near-Death Studies 
UANDS), Dr. Elizabeth W. Fenske, a clinical psychologist in private 



Traveling in the Superholograrn 


St?™ t A announced that she, too, believes that NDEs 

are journeys into a holographic realm of higher frequencies She agrees 

MJ^fePa^SS- IjthM^we^apome daBcu[t to make a dlstjnctl 

between fought and light In 3 the near A eath experience thought 
seems to be light, she observes. tnought 

Heaven as Hologram 

In addition to those mentioned by Bing and Fenske, the NDE has 
numerous other features that are markedly holographic iS OBEers, after 
NDEers have detached from the physlLuhey find 

£ 3 - °"u f ** «*** > 6'ther M a 4^^^^ cloud of 

"5' * as a llA mlike body sculpted by thought When the 

3W h n\h ft E ^W t tfffljw[ f $ $fr|S MfW urpnV 


says that when he first emerged from his body he looked "something 
hke a jellyfish" and fell lightly to the floor like a soap bubble ?hen he 
qu.ckly expanded into a ghostly three-dimensional fmage of a naked 

VlTnr A T' A PreSen Ce ° I tW ° Whminthe ..U-—--. _ J 

^§aV ? w — £e6i ing « l aar r rff Le s yie„ v to b 

cTothedTthe women, hpwevefo never offered any indication that thTy 
were anle to see any of this). -wn uiat tney 

thWn Att mnermos '. *? AaS md aeA es are responsible for creating the form we 
assume m the afterlife dimension is evident in the experf 
thTnh f NDBhS c PeoPle who « aM " ed ta whee chaff n f„d7" yS ' Ca A eX '? nCe M 
themsewes h heai th ? bod.^ ±gt cAn mn and aW Amputees mva riably have 

their limbs back. The elderly often mhab,t youthful bodies, and even 
stranger, children frequent y see themselves as adults, a fact that may 

afffitffdSfr fee 3 AA ° mdttiS that m our souls ™ of us 
These hobgramhke bodies can be remarkably detailed In the incident 
mvolvmg the man who became embarrassed at his ownnakedness, for 
example, the clothing he materialized for himsTwas so met.cuk.usly 
wrought that he could even make out the seamsintne 

material!" 1 Similarly, another man who studied his hands while in the 
ND state said they were "composed of light with tiny structures in 
them" and when he looked closely he could even see "the delicate 
whorls of his fingerprints and tubes of light up his arms." 42 

Some of Whitton's research is also relevant to this issue. Amazingly, 
when Whitton hypnotized patients and regressed them to the 
between-life state, they too reported all the classic features of the NDE, 
passage through a tunnel, encounters with deceased relatives and/or 
"guides," entrance into a splendorons light -filled realm in which time 
and space no longer existed, encounters with luminous beings, and a life 
review. In fact, according to Whitton's subjects the main purpose of the 
liie review was to refresh their memories so they could more mindfully 
plan their next life, a process in which the beings of light gently and 
noncoercively assisted. 

Like Ring, after studying the testimony of his subjects Whitton 
concluded that the shapes and structures one perceives in the afterlife 
dimension are thought-forms created by the mind. "Rene Descartes' 
famous dictum, 'I think, therefore I am,' is never more pertinent than in 
the between-life state," says Whitton. "There is no experience of 
existence without thought."" 13 

This was especially true when it came to the form Whitton's patients 
assumed in the between-life state. Several said they didn't even have a 
body unless they were thinking. "One man described it by saying that if 
he stopped thinking he was merely a cloud in an endless cloud, 
undifferentiated," he observes. "But as soon as he started to think, he 
became himself A (a state of affairs that is oddly reminiscent of the 
subjects in Tart's mutual hypnosis experiment who discovered they 
didn't have hands unless they thought them into existence). At first the 
bodies Whitton's subjects assumed resembled the persons they had been 
in their last life. But as their experience in the between-life state 
continued, they gradually became a kind of hologramlike composite of 
all of their past lives. 45 This composite identity even had a name 
separate from any of the names they had used in their physical 
incarnations, although none of his subjects was able to pronounce it 
using their physical vocal cords. ' s 

What do NDEers look like when they have not constructed a holo- 
gram like body for themselves? Many say that they were not aware of 
any form and were simply "themselves" or "their mind." Others have 
more specific impressions and describe themselves as "a cloud of col- 
ors," "a mist," "an energy pattern," or "an energy field," terms that 



again suggest that we are all ultimately just frequency phenomena, 
patterns of some unknown vibratory energy enfolded in the greater 
matrix of the frequency domain. Some NDEers assert that in addition to 
being composed of colored frequencies of light, we are also constituted 
out of sound. "I realized that each person and thing has its own musical 
tone range as well as its own color range," says an Arizona housewife 
who had an NDE during childbirth, "If you can imagine yourself 
effortlessly moving in and out among prismatic rays of light and hearing 
each person's musical notes join and harmonize with your own when 
you touch or pass them, you would have some idea of the unseen world. " 
The woman, who encountered many individuals in the afterlife realm 
who manifested only as clouds of colors and sound, believes the 
mellifluous tones each soul emanates are what people are describing 
when they say they hear beautiful music in the ND dimension." 7 

Like Monroe, some NDEers report being able to see in all directions 
at once while in the disembodied state. After wondering what he looked 
like, one man said he suddenly found himself staring at his own back. 48 
Robert Sullivan, an amateur NDE researcher from Pennsylvania who 
specializes in NDEs by soldiers during combat, interviewed a World 
War II veteran who temporarily retained this ability even after he 
returned to his physical body. "He experienced 
three -hundred-sixty-degree vision while running away from a German 
machine-gun nest," says Sullivan. "Not only could he see ahead as he ran, 
but he could see the gunners trying to draw a bead on him from 
behind."- 19 

Instantaneous Knowledge 

Another part of the NDE that possesses many holographic features is the 
life review. Ring refers to it as "a holographic phenomenon par 
excellence. " Grof and Joan Halifax, a Harvard medical anthropologist 
and the coauthor (with Grof) of The Human Encounter with Death., 
have also commented on the life review's holographic aspects. According 
to several NDE researchers, including Moody, even many NDEers 
themselves use the term "holographic" when describing the experi- 
ence. 50 

The reason for this characterization is obvious as soon as one begins to 
read accounts of the life review. Again and again NDEers use the 

Traveling in the Superbologram 


same adjectives to describe it, referring to it as an incredibly vivid, 
wrap-around, three-dimensional replay of their entire life. "It's like 
climbing right inside a movie of your life," says one NDEer. "Every 
moment from every year of your life is played back in complete sen 
sory detail. Total, total recall. And it all happens in an instant" ' "The 
whole thing was really odd. I was there; I was actually seeing these 
flashbacks; I was actually walking through them, and it was so fast 
Yet, it was slow enough that I could take it all in," says another. 62 
During this instantaneous and panoramic remembrance NDEers 
reexperience al! the emotions, the joys and the sorrows, that accompa 
nied all of the events in their life. More than that, they feel all of the 
emotions of the people with whom they have interacted as well. They 
feel the happiness of all the individuals to whom they've been kind. If 
they have committed a hurtful act, they become acutely aware of the 
pain their victim felt as a result of their thoughtlessness. And no event 
seems too trivial to be exempt While reliving a moment in her child 
hood, one woman suddenly experienced all the loss and powerlessness 
her sister had felt after she (then a child) snatched a toy away from 
her sister. *\_ 

Whitton has uncovered evidence that thoughtless acts are not the only 
things that cause individuals remorse during the life review. Under 
hypnosis his subjects reported that failed dreams and aspira- 
tions — things they had hoped to accomplish during their life but had 
not — also caused them pangs of sadness-Thoughts, too, are replayed 
with exacting fidelity during the life review. Reveries, faces glimpsed 
once but remembered for years, things that made one laugh, the joy one 
felt when gazing at a particular painting, childish worries, and long 
forgotten daydreams — all flit through one's mind in a second. As one 
NDEer summarizes, "Not even your thoughts are lost . . . Every thought 
was there." 33 

And so, the life review is holographic not only in its three-dimensionality, 
but in the amazing capacity for information storage the process displays. It 
is also holographic in a third way. Like the kabbalistic [ "aleph," a 
mythical point in space and time that contains all other points in space and 
time, it is a moment that contains all other moments. Even the ability to 
perceive the life review seems holographic in that it is a faculty capable of 
experiencing something that is paradoxically at once both incredibly rapid 
and yet slow enough to witness in detail. As an NDEer in 1821 put it, it is 
the ability to "simultaneously comprehend the whole and every part." 64 



In fact, the life review bares a marked resemblance to the afterlife 
judgment scenes described in the sacred texts of many of the world's 
great religions, from the Egyptian to the Judeo-Christian, but with one 
crucial difference. Like Whitton's subjects, NDEers universally report 
that they are never judged by the beings of light, but feel only love and 
acceptance in their presence. The only judgment that ever takes place is 
self- judgment and arises solely out of the NDEer's own feelings of guilt 
and repentance. Occasionally the beings do assert themselves, but 
instead of behaving in an authoritarian manner, they act as guides and 
counselors whose only purpose is to teach. 

This total lack of cosmic judgment and/or any divine system of 
punishment and reward has been and continues to be one of the most 
controversial aspects of the NDE among religious groups, but it is one 
of the most oft reported features of the experience. What is the expla- 
nation? Moody believes it is as simple as it is polemic. We live in a 
universe that is far more benevolent than we realize. 

That is not to say that anything goes during the life review. Like 
Whitton's hypnotic subjects, after arriving in the realm of light NDEers 
appear to enter a state of heightened or metaconsciousness awareness 
and become lucidly honest in their self-reflections. 

It also does not mean that the beings of light prescribe no values. In 
NDE after NDE they stress two things. One is the importance of love. 
Over and over they repeat this message, that we must learn to replace 
anger with love, learn to love more, learn to forgive and love everyone 
unconditionally, and learn that we in turn are loved. This appears to be 
the only moral criterion the beings use. Even sexual activity ceases to 
possess the moral stigma we humans are so fond of attaching to it. One 
of Whitton's subjects reported that after living several withdrawn and 
depressed incarnations he was urged to plan a life as an amorous and 
sexually active female in order to add balance to the overall 
development of his soul. 55 It appears that in the minds of the beings of 
light, compassion is the barometer of grace, and time and time again 
when NDEers wonder if some act they committed was right or wrong, 
the beings counter their inquiries only with a question: Did you do it out 
of love? Was the motivation love? 

That is why we have been placed here on the earth, say the beings, to 
learn that love is the key. They acknowledge that it is a difficult 
undertaking, but intimate that it is crucial to both our biological and 
spiritual existence in ways that we have perhaps not even begun to 
fathom. Even children return from the near-death realm with this 

Traveling in the Superhoiogram 


message firmly impressed in their thoughts. States one little boy who 
after being hit by a car was guided into the world beyond by two people 
in "very white" robes: "What I learned there is that the most important 
thing is loving while you are alive." 56 

The second thing the beings emphasize is knowledge. Frequently 
NDEers comment that the beings seemed pleased whenever an incident 
involving knowledge or learning flickered by during their life review. 
Some are openly counseled to embark on a quest for knowledge after 
they return to their physical bodies, especially knowledge related to 
self-growth or that enhances one's ability to help other people. Others 
are prodded with statements such as "learning is a continuous process 
and goes on even after death" and "knowledge is one of the few things 
you will be able to take with you after you have died." 

The preeminence of knowledge in the afterlife dimension is apparent 
in another way. Some NDEers discovered that in the presence of the 
light they suddenly had direct access to all knowledge. This access 
manifested in several ways. Sometimes it came in response to inquiries. 
One man said that all he had to do was ask a question, such as what 
would it be like to be an insect, and instantly the experience was his. 57 
Another NDEer described it by saying, "You can think of a question . . . 
and immediately know the answer to it. As simple as that. And it can be 
any question whatsoever. It can be on a subject that you don't know 
anything about, that you are not in the proper position even to 
understand and the light will give you the instantaneous correct answer 
and make you understand it. " 58 

Some NDEers report that they didn't even have to ask questions in 
order to access this infinite library of information. Following their life 
review they just suddenly knew everything, all the knowledge there was 
to know from the beginning of time to the end. Others came into contact 
with this knowledge after the being of light made some specific gesture, 
such as wave its hand. Still others said that instead of acquiring the 
knowledge, they remembered it, but forgot most of what they recalled 
as soon as they returned to their physical bodies (an amnesia that seems 
to be universal among NDEers who are privy to such visions). 53 
Whatever the case, it appears that once we are in the world beyond, it is 
no longer necessary to enter an altered state of consciousness in order to 
have access to the transpersona! and infinitely interconnected 
informational realm experienced by Grof s patients. 



In fact, the life review bares a marked resemblance to the afterlife 
judgment scenes described in the sacred texts of many of the world's 
great religions, from the Egyptian to the Judeo-Christian, but with one 
crucial difference. Like Whitton's subjects, NDEers universally report 
that they are never judged by the beings of light, but feel only Jove and 
acceptance in their presence. The only judgment that ever takes place is 
self- judgment and arises solely out of the NDEer's own feelings of guilt 
and repentance. Occasionally the beings do assert themselves, but 
instead of behaving in an authoritarian manner, they act as guides and 
counselors whose only purpose is to teach. 

This total lack of cosmic judgment and/or any divine system of 
punishment and reward has been and continues to be one of the most 
controversial aspects of the NDE among religious groups, but it is one 
of the most oft reported features of the experience. What is the expla- 
nation? Moody believes it is as simple as it is polemic. We live in a 
universe that is far more benevolent than we realize. 

That is not to say that anything goes during the life review. Like 
Whitton's hypnotic subjects, after arriving in the realm of light NDEers 
appear to enter a state of heightened or metaconsciousness awareness 
and become lucidly honest in their self-reflections. 

It also does not mean that the beings of light prescribe no values. In 
NDE after NDE they stress two things. One is the importance of love. 
Over and over they repeat this message, that we must learn to replace 
anger with love, learn to love more, learn to forgive and love everyone 
unconditionally, and learn that we in turn are loved. This appears to be 
the only moral criterion the beings use. Even sexual activity ceases to 
possess the moral stigma we humans are so fond of attaching to it. One 
of Whitton's subjects reported that after living several withdrawn and 
depressed incarnations he was urged to plan a life as an amorous and 
sexually active female in order to add balance to the overall development 
of his soul. ss It appears that in the minds of the beings of light, 
compassion is the barometer of grace, and time and time again when 
NDEers wonder if some act they committed was right or wrong, the 
beings counter their inquiries only with a question: Did you do it out of 
love? Was the motivation love? 

That is why we have been placed here on the earth, say the beings, to 
learn that love is the key. They acknowledge that it is a difficult 
undertaking, but intimate that it is crucial to both our biological and 
spiritual existence in ways that we have perhaps not even begun to 
fathom. Even children return from the near-death realm with this 

Traveling in the Superhoiogram 


message firmly impressed in their thoughts. States one little boy who 
after being hit by a car was guided into the world beyond by two people 
in "very white" robes: "What I learned there is that the most important 
thing is loving while you are alive. " S6 

The second thing the beings emphasize is knowledge. Frequently 
NDEers comment that the beings seemed pleased whenever an incident 
involving knowledge or learning flickered by during their life review. 
Some are openly counseled to embark on a quest for knowledge after 
they return to their physical bodies, especially knowledge related to 
self-growth or that enhances one's ability to help other people. Others 
are prodded with statements such as "learning is a continuous process 
and goes on even after death" and "knowledge is one of the few things 
you will be able to take with you after you have died." 

The preeminence of knowledge in the afterlife dimension is apparent 
in another way. Some NDEers discovered that in the presence of the 
light they suddenly had direct access to all knowledge. This access 
manifested in several ways. Sometimes it came in response to inquiries. 
One man said that all he had to do was ask a question, such as what 
would it be like to be an insect, and instantly the experience was his. 67 
Another NDEer described it by saying, "You can think of a question . . . 
and immediately know the answer to it. As simple as that. And it can be 
any question whatsoever. It can be on a subject that you don't know 
anything about, that you are not in the proper position even to 
understand and the light will give you the instantaneous correct answer 
and make you understand it." 5 ** 

Some NDEers report that they didn't even have to ask questions in 
order to access this infinite library of information. Following their life 
review they just suddenly knew everything, all the knowledge there was 
to know from the beginning of time to the end. Others came into contact 
with this knowledge after the being of light made some specific gesture, 
such as wave its hand. Still others said that instead of acquiring the 
knowledge, they remembered it, but forgot most of what they recalled 
as soon as they returned to their physical bodies (an amnesia that seems 
to be universal among NDEers who are privy to such visions). 63 
Whatever the case, it appears that once we are in the world beyond, it is 
no longer necessary to enter an altered state of consciousness in order to 
have access to the transpersona! and infinitely interconnected 
informational realm experienced by Grof s patients. 



In addition to being holographic in all the ways already mentioned, 
this vision of total knowledge has another holographic characteristic. 
NDEers often say that during the vision the information arrives in 
"chunks" that register instantaneously in one's thoughts. In other words, 
rather than being strung out in a linear fashion like words in a sentence 
or scenes in a movie, all the facts, details, images, and pieces of 
information burst into one's awareness in an instant. One NDEer 
referred to these bursts of information as "bundles of thought"* 
Monroe, who has also experienced such instantaneous explosions of 
information while in the OB state, calls them "thought balls." 61 

Indeed, anyone who possesses any appreciable psychic ability is 
familiar with this experience, for this is the form in which one receives 
psychic information as well. For instance, sometimes when I meet a 
stranger {and on occasion even when I just hear a person's name), a 
thought ball of information about that person will instantly flash into my 
awareness. This thought ball can include important facts about the 
person's psychological and emotional makeup, their health, and even 
scenes from their past. I find that I am especially prone to getting 
thought balls about people who are in some kind of crisis. For example, 
recently I met a woman and instantly knew she was contemplating 
suicide. I also knew some of the reasons why. As I always do in such 
situations, I started talking to her and cautiously maneuvered the 
conversation to things psychic. After finding out that she was receptive 
to the subject, I confronted her with what I knew and got her to talk 
about her problems. I got her to promise to seek some kind of 
professional counseling instead of the darker option she was 

Receiving information in this manner is similar to the way one 
becomes aware of information while dreaming. Virtually everyone has 
had a dream in which they find themselves in a situation and suddenly 
know all kinds of things about it without being told. For instance, you 
might dream you are at a party and as soon as you are there you know 
who it is being given for and why. Similarly, everyone has had a 
detailed idea or inspiration dawn upon them in a flash. Such experiences 
are lesser versions of the thought ball effect. 

Interestingly, because these bursts of psychic information arrive in 
nonlinear chunks, it sometimes takes me several moments to translate 
them into words. Like the psychological gestalts experienced by in- 
dividuals during transpersonal experiences, they are holographic in 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


the sense that they are instantaneous "wholes" our time-oriented minds 
must struggle with for a moment in order to unravel and convert into a 
serial arrangement of parts. 

What form does the knowledge contained in the thought balls expe- 
rienced during NDEs take? According to NDEers all forms of commu- 
nication are used, sounds, moving hologramlike images, even telepa- 
thy — a fact that Ring believes demonstrates once again that the hereafter 
is "a world of existence where thought is king." 62 

The thoughtful reader may immediately wonder why the quest for 
learning is so important during life if we have access to all knowledge 
after we die? When asked this question NDEers replied that they 
weren't certain, but felt strongly that it had something to do with the 
purpose of life and the ability of each individual to reach out and help 
others. - A 

Life Plans and Parallel Time Tracks 

Like Whitton, NDE researchers have also uncovered evidence that our 
lives are planned beforehand, at least to some extent, and we each play a 
role in the creation of this plan. This is apparent in several aspects of the 
experience. Frequently after arriving in the world of light, NDEers are 
told that "it is not their time yet." As Ring points out, this remark clearly 
implies the existence of some kind of "life plan." 63 It is also clear that 
NDEers play a role in the formulation of these destinies, for they are 
often given the choice whether to return or stay. There are even 
instances of NDEers being told that it is their time and still being 
allowed to return. Moody cites a case in which a man started to cry when 
he realized he was dead because he was afraid his wife wouldn't be able 
to raise their nephew without him. On hearing this the being told him 
that since he wasn't asking for himself he would be allowed to return. M 
In another case a woman argued that she hadn't danced enough yet. Her 
remark caused the being of light to give a hearty laugh and she, too, was 
given permission to return to physical life.* s 

That our future is at least partially sketched out is also evident in a 
phenomenon Ring calls the "personal flashforward." On occasion, 
during the vision of knowledge, NDEers are shown glimpses of their 
own future. In one particularly striking case a child NDEer was told 



various specifics about his future, including the fact that he would be 
married at age twenty-eight and would have two children. He was even 
shown his adult self and his future children sitting in a room of the house 
he would eventually be living in, and as he gazed at the room he noticed 
something very strange on the wall, something that his mind could not 
grasp. Decades later and after each of these predictions had come to 
pass, he found himself in the very scene he had witnessed as a child and 
realized that the strange object on the wall was a "forced-air heater," a 
kind of heater that had not yet been invented at the time of his NDE. 66 

In another equally astonishing personal flashforward a female NDEer 
was shown a photograph of Moody, told his full name, and told that 
when the time was right she would tell him about her experience. The 
year was 1 97 1 and Moody had not yet published Life after Life, so his 
name and picture meant nothing to the woman. However, the time 
became "right" four years later when Moody and his family unwittingly 
moved to the very street on which the woman lived. That Halloween 
Moody's son was out trick-or-treating and knocked on the woman's 
door. After hearing the boy's name, the woman told him to tell his father 
she had to talk to him, and when Moody obliged she related her 
remarkable story BT 

Some NDEs even support Loye's proposal that several holographic 
parallel universes, or time tracks, exist. On occasion NDEers are shown 
personal flashforwards and told that the future they have witnessed will 
come to pass only if they continue on their current path. In one unique 
instance an NTDEer was shown a completely different history of the 
earth, a history that would have developed if "certain events" had not 
taken place around the time of the Greek philosopher and 
mathematician Pythagoras three thousand years ago. The vision 
revealed that if these events, the precise nature of which the woman 
does not disclose, had failed to take place, we would now be living in a 
world of peace and harmony marked "by the absence of religious wars 
and of a Christ figure." 6 * Such experiences suggest that the laws of time 
and space operative in a holographic universe may be very strange 

Even NDEers who do not experience direct evidence of the role they 
play in their own destiny often come back with a firm understanding of 
the holographic interconnectedness of all things. As a 
sixty-two-year-old businessman who had an NDE during a cardiac 
arrest puts 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


it " One thing 1 learned was that we are all part of one big, living universe. 
If we think we can hurt another person or another living thing without 
hurting ourselves we are sadly mistaken. I look at a forest or a flower or 
a bird now, and say, 'That is me, part of me.' We are connected with all 
things and if we send love along those connections, then we are 
happy." 69 

You Can Eat but You Don't Have To 

The holographic and mind-created aspects of the near-death dimension 
are apparent in myriad other ways. In describing the hereafter one child 
said that food appeared whenever she wished for it, but there was no 
need to eat, an observation that underscores once again the illusory and 
hologramlike nature of afterlife reality. 70 Even the symbolic language of 
the psyche is given "objective" form. For example, one of Whitton's 
subjects said that when he was introduced to a woman who was going to 
figure prominently in his next life, instead of appearing as a human she 
appeared as a shape that was half -rose, half -cobra. After being directed 
to figure out the meaning of the symbolism, he realized that he and the 
woman had been in love with one another in two other lifetimes. 
However, she had also twice been responsible for his death. Thus, 
instead of manifesting as a human, the loving and sinister elements of 
her character caused her to appear in a hologramlike form that better 
symbolized these two dramatically polar qualities. 71 

Whitton's subject is not alone in his experience. Hazrat Inayat Khan 
said that when he entered a mystical state and traveled to "divine 
realities," the beings he encountered also occasionally appeared in 
half-human, half-animal forms. Like Whitton's subject, Khan discerned 
that these transfigurations were symbolic, and when a being appeared as 
part animal it was because the animal symbolized some quality the 
being possessed. For example, a being that had great strength might 
appear with the head of a lion, or a being that was unusually smart and 
crafty might have some of the features of a fox. Khan theorized that this 
is why ancient cultures, such as the Egyptian, pictured the gods that rule 
the afterlife realm as having animal heads, 72 



The propensity near-death reality has for molding itself into holo- 
gramlike shapes that mirror the thoughts, desires, and symbols that 
populate our minds explains why Westerners tend to perceive the beings 
of light as Christian religious figures, why Indians perceive them as 
Hindu saints and deities, and so on. The plasticity of the NT) realm 
suggests that such outward appearances may be no more or less real than 
the food wished into existence by the little girl mentioned above, the 
woman who appeared as an amalgam of a cobra and a rose, and the 
spectral clothing conjured into existence by the NDEer who was 
embarrassed at his own nakedness. This same plasticity explains the 
other cultural differences one finds in near-death experiences, such as 
why some NDEers reach the hereafter by traveling through a tunnel, 
some by crossing a bridge, some by going over a body of water, and some 
simply by walking down a road. Again it appears that in a reality created 
solely out of interacting thought structures, even the landscape itself is 
sculpted by the ideas and expectations of the ex-periencer. 

At this juncture an important point needs to be made. As startling and 
foreign as the near-death realm seems, the evidence presented in this 
book reveals that our own level of existence may not be all that different. 
As we have seen, we too can access all information, it is just a little more 
difficult for us. We too can occasionally have personal flashforwards 
and come face-to-face with the phantasmal nature of time and space. 
And we too can sculpt and reshape our bodies, and sometimes even our 
reality, according to our beliefs, it just takes us a little more time and 
effort. Indeed, Sai Baba's abilities suggest that we can even materialize 
food simply by wishing for it, and Therese Neumann's inedia offers 
evidence that eatbg may ultimately be as unnecessary for us as it is for 
individuals in the near-death realm. 

In fact, it appears that this reality and the next are different in degree, 
but not in kind. Both are hologramlike constructs, realities that are 
established, as Jahn and Dunne put it, only by the interaction of 
consciousness with its environment. Put another way, our reality 
appears to be a more frozen version of the afterlife dimension. It takes a 
little more time for our beliefs to resculpt our bodies into things like 
nail-like stigmata and for the symbolic language of our psyches to 
manifest externally as synchronises. But manifest they do, in a slow and 
inexorable river, a river whose persistent presence teaches us that we 
live in a universe we are only just beginning to understand. 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


Information about the Near-Death Realm from 
Other Sources 

One does not have to be in a life -threatening crisis to visit the afterlife 
dimension. There is evidence that the ND realm can also be reached 
during OBEs. In his writings, Monroe describes several visits to levels 
of reality in which he encountered deceased friends, 73 An even more 
skilled out-of-body visitor to the land of the dead was Swedish mystic 
Swedenborg. Born in 1688, Swedenborg was the Leonardo da Vinci of 
his era. In his early years he studied science. He was the leading 
mathematician in Sweden, spoke nine languages, was an engraver, a 
politician, an astronomer, and a businessman, built watches and micro- 
scopes as a hobby, wrote books on metallurgy, color theory, commerce, 
economics, physics, chemistry, mining, and anatomy, and invented 
prototypes for the airplane and the submarine. 

Throughout all of this he also meditated regularly, and when he 
reached middle age, developed the ability to enter deep trances during 
which he left his body and visited what appeared to him to be heaven 
and conversed with "angels" and "spirits." That Swedenborg was 
experiencing something profound during these journeys, there can be no 
doubt. He became so famous for this ability that the queen of Sweden 
asked him to find out why her deceased brother had neglected to 
respond to a letter she had sent him before his death. Swedenborg 
promised to consult the deceased and the next day returned with a 
message which the queen confessed contained information only she and 
her dead brother knew. Swedenborg performed this service several 
times for various individuals who sought his help, and on another 
occasion told a widow where to find a secret compartment in her 
deceased husband's desk in which she found some desperately needed 
documents. So well known was this latter incident that it inspired the 
German philosopher Immanuel Kant to write an entire book on Swe- 
denborg entitled Dreams of a Spirit-Seer, 

But the most amazing thing about Swedenborg's accounts of the 
afterlife realm is how closely they mirror the descriptions offered by 
modern-day NDEers. For example, Swedenborg talks about passing 
through a dark tunnel, being met by welcoming spirits, landscapes more 
beautiful than any on earth and one where time and space no longer exist, 
a dazzling light that emitted a feeling of love, appearing before beings of 
light, and being enveloped by an all-encompassing 



peace and serenity. He also says that he was allowed to observe 
firsthand the arrival of the newly deceased in heaven, and watch as they 
were subjected to the life review, a process he called "the opening of the 
Book of Lives." He acknowledged that during the process a person 
witnessed "everything they had ever been or done," but added a unique 
twist According to Swedenborg, the information that arose during the 
opening of the Book of Lives was recorded in the nervous system of the 
person's spiritual body. Thus, in order to evoke the life review an 
"angel" had to examine the individual's entire body "beginning with the 
fingers of each hand, and proceeding through the whole."" 

Swedenborg also refers to the holographic thought balls the angels 

use to communicate and says that they are no different from the 

portrayals he could see in the "wave-substance" that surrounded a 

person. Like most NDEers he describes these telepathic bursts of 

knowledge as a picture language so dense with information that each 

image contains a thousand ideas. A communicated series of these 

portrayals can also be quite lengthy and "last up to several hours, in 

such a sequential arrangement that one can only marvel." 76 

But even here Swedenborg added a fascinating twist. In addition to 

using portrayals, angels also employ a speech that contains concepts that 

are beyond human understanding. In fact, the main reason they use 

portrayals is because it is the only way they can make even a pale 

version of their thoughts and ideas comprehensible to human beings. 77 

Swedenborg's experiences even corroborate some of the less commonly 

reported elements of the NDE. He noted that in the spirit world one no 

longer needs to eat food, but added that information takes its place as a 

source of nourishment™ He said that when spirits and angels talked, 

their thoughts were constantly coalescing into three dimensional 

symbolic images, especially animals. For example, he said that when 

angels talked about love and affection "beautiful animals are presented, 

such as lambs — When however the angels are talking about evil 

affections, this is portrayed by hideous, fierce, and useless animals, like 

tigers, bears, wolves, scorpions, snakes, and mice." 79 Although it is not a 

feature reported by modern NDEers, Swedenborg said that he was 

astonished to find that in heaven there are also spirits from other planets, 

an astounding assertion for a man who was born over three hundred 

years ago! 80 Most intriguing of all are those remarks by Swedenborg that 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


to refer to reality's holographic qualities. For instance, he said that 
although human beings appear to be separate from one another, we are 
all connected in a cosmic unity. Moreover, each of us is a heaven in 
miniature, and every person, indeed the entire physical universe, is a 
microcosm of the greater divine reality. As we have seen, he also 
believed that underlying visible reality was a wave-substance. 

In fact, several Swedenborg scholars have commented on the many 
parallels between some of Swedenborg's concepts and Bohm and Pri- 
bram's theory. One such scholar is Dr. George F. Dole, a professor of 
theology at the Swedenborg School of Religion in Newton, Massachu- 
setts. Dole, who holds degrees from Yale, Oxford, and Harvard, notes 
that one of the most basic tenets of Swedenborg's thinking is that our 
universe is constantly created and sustained by two wavelike flows, one 
from heaven and one coming from our own soul or spirit. "If we put 
these images together, the resemblance to the hologram is striking," 
says Dole. "We are constituted by the intersection of two flows — one 
direct, from the divine, and one indirect, from the divine via our 
environment. We can view ourselves as interference patterns, because 
the inflow is a wave phenomenon, and we are where the waves meet." 81 

Swedenborg also believed that, despite its ghostlike and ephemeral 
qualities, heaven is actually a more fundamental level of reality than our 
own physical world. It is, he said, the archetypal source from whieh all 
earthly forms originate, and to which all forms return, a concept not too 
dissimilar from Bohm's idea of the implicate and explicate orders. In 
addition, he too believed that the afterlife realm and physical reality are 
different in degree but not in kind, and that the material world is just a 
frozen version of the thought-built reality of heaven. The matter that 
comprises both heaven and earth "flows in by stages" from the Divine, 
said Swedenborg, and "at each new stage it becomes more genera) and 
therefore coarser and hazier, and it becomes slower, and therefore more 
viscous and colder." 62 

Swedenborg filled almost twenty volumes with his experiences, and 
on his deathbed was asked if there was anything he wanted to recant. He 
earnestly replied: "Everything that I have written is as true as you now 
behold me. I might have said much more had it been permitted to me. 
After death you will see all, and then we shall have much to say to each 
other on the subject." 83 



The Land of Nonwhere 

Swedenborg is not the only individual in history who possessed the 
ability to make out-of-body journeys to the subtler levels of reality. The 
twelfth-century Persian Sufis also employed deep trancelike meditation 
to visit the "land where spirits dwell." And again, the parallels between 
their reports and the body of evidence that has accrued in this chapter 
are striking. They claimed that in this other realm one possesses a 
"subtle body" and relies on senses that are not always associated with 
"specific organs" in that body. They asserted that it is a dimension 
populated by many spiritual teachers, or imams, and sometimes called it 
"the country of the hidden Imam." 

They held that it is a world created solely out of the subtle matter of 
alarn almithal, or thought. Even space itself, including "nearness," 
"distances," and "far-off" places, was created by thought. But this did 
not mean that the country of the hidden Imam was unreal, a world 
constituted out of sheer nothingness. Nor was it a landscape created by 
only one mind. Rather it was a plane of existence created by the 
imagination of many people, and yet one that still had its own 
corporeality and dimension) its own forests, mountains, and even cities. 
The Sufis devoted a good deal of their writings to the clarification of this 
point So alien is this idea to many Western thinkers that the late Henry 
Corbin, a professor of Islamic Religion at the Sorbonne in Paris and a 
leading authority in Iranian-Islamic thought, coined the term imaginal 
to describe it, meaning a world that is created by imagination but is 
ontologically no less real than physical reality. "The reason I absolutely 
had to find another expression was that, for a good many years, my 
profession required me to interpret Arabic and Persian texts, whose 
meaning I would undoubtedly have betrayed had I simply contented 
myself with the term imaginary, " stated Corbin. M 

Because of the imagina! nature of the afterlife realm, the Sufis 
concluded that imagination itself is a faculty of perception, an idea that 
offers new light on why Whitton's subject materialized a hand only after 
he started thinking, and why visualizing images has such a potent effect 
on the health and physical structure of our bodies. It also contributed to 
the Sufis' belief that one could use visualization, a process they called 
"creative prayer," to alter and reshape the very fabric of one's destiny. 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


In a notion that parallels Bohm's implicate and explicate orders, the 
Sufis believed that, despite its phantasmal qualities, the afterlife realm is 
the generative matrix that gives birth to the entire physical universe. All 
things in physical reality arise from this spiritual reality, said the Sufis. 
However, even the most learned among them found this strange, that by 
meditating and venturing deep into the psyche one arrived in an inner 
world that "turns out to envelop, surround, or contain that which at first 
was outer and visible." 85 

This realization is, of course, just another reference to the nonlocal 
and holographic qualities of reality. Each of us contains the whole of 
heaven. More than that, each of us contains the location of heaven. Or as 
the Sufis put it, instead of having to search for spiritual reality "in the 
where," the "where" is in us. Indeed, in discussing the nonlocal aspects 
of the afterlife realm, a twelfth-century Persian mystic named 
Sohrawardi said that the country of the hidden Imam might better be 
called Na-Koja-Abad, "the land of nonwhere."* 8 

Admittedly this idea is not new. It is the same sentiment expressed in 
the statement "the kingdom of heaven is within." What is new is the idea 
that such notions are actually references to the nonlocal aspects of the 
subtler levels of reality. Again, it is suggested that when a person has an 
OBE they might not actually travel anywhere. They might be merely 
altering the always illusory hologram of reality so that they have the 
experience of traveling somewhere. In a holographic universe not only 
is consciousness already everywhere, it too is nonwhere. 

The idea that the afterlife realm lies deep in the nonlocal expanse of 
the psyche has been allude'd to by some NDEers. As one seven-year-old 
boy put it, "Death is like walking into your mind." S7 Bohm offers a 
similarly nonlocal view of what happens during our transition from this 
life to the next: "At the present, our whole thought process is telling us 
that we have to keep our attention here. You can't cross the street, for 
example, if you don't. But consciousness is always in the unlimited 
depth which is beyond space and time, in the subtler levels of the 
implicate order. Therefore, if you went deeply enough into the actual 
present, then maybe there's no difference between this moment and the 
next. The idea would be that in the death experience you would get into 
that. Contact with eternity is in the present moment, but it is mediated by 
thought. It is a matter of attention." 88 



Intelligent and Coordinated Images of Light 

The idea that the subtler levels of reality can be accessed through a shift 
in consciousness alone is also one of the main premises of the yogic 
tradition. Many yogic practices are designed specifically to teach 
individuals how to make such journeys. And once again, the individuals 
who succeed in these ventures describe what is by now a familiar 
landscape. One such individual was Sri Yukteswar Giri, a little known 
but widely respected Hindu holy man who died in Puri, India, in 1936. 
Evans-Wentz, who met Sri Yukteswar in the 1 920s, described him as a 
man of "pleasing presence and high character" fully "worthy of the 
veneration that his followers accorded him." 69 

Sri Yukteswar appears to have been especially gifted at passing back 
and forth between this world and the next and described the afterlife 
dimension as a world composed of "various subtle vibrations of light 
and color" and "hundreds of times larger than the materia! cosmos." He 
also said that it was infinitely more beautiful than our own realm of 
existence, and abounded with "opal lakes, bright seas, and rainbow 
rivers." Because it is more "vibrant with God's creative light" its 
weather is always pleasant, and its only climatic manifestations are 
occasional falls of "luminous white snow and rain of many-colored 

Individuals who live in this wondrous realm can materialize any body 
they want and can "see" with any area of their body they wish. They can 
also materialize any fruit or other food they desire, although they " are 
almost freed from any necessity of eating" and "feast only on the 
ambrosia of eternally new knowledge." 

They communicate through a telepathic series of "light pictures," 
rejoice at "the immortality of friendship," realize "the indestructibility 
of love," feel keen pain "if any mistake is made in conduct or perception 
of truth," and when they are confronted with the multitude of relatives, 
fathers, mothers, wives, husbands, and friends acquired during their 
"different incarnations on earth," they are at a loss as to whom to love 
especially and thus learn to give "a divine and equal love to all." 

What is the quintessential nature of our reality once we take up 
residence in this luminous land? To this question, Sri Yukteswar gave 
an answer that was as simple as it was holographic. In this realm where 
eating and even breathing are unnecessary, where a single thought can 
materialize a "whole garden of fragrant flowers," and all 

Traveling in the SuperholoRram 

3 A 3 

bodily injuries are "healed at once by mere willing," we are, quite simply, 
"intelligent and coordinated images of light." 90 

More References to Light 

Sri Yukteswar is not the only yogic teacher to use such hologramlike 
terms when describing the subtler levels of reality. Another is Sri 
Aurobindo Ghose, a thinker, political activist, and mystic whom Indians 
revere alongside Gandhi. Born in 1872 to an upper-class Indian family, 
Sri Aurobindo was educated in England, where he quickly developed the 
reputation as a kind of prodigy . He was fluent not only in English, Hindi, 
Russian, German, and French, but also in ancient Sanskrit. He could 
read a case of books a day (as a youth he read all of the many and 
voluminous sacred books of India) and repeat verbatim every word on 
every page that he read. His powers of concentration were legendary, 
and it was said that he could sit studying in the same posture all night 
long, oblivious even to the incessant bites of the mosquitoes. 

Like Gandhi, Sri Aurobindo was active in the nationalist movement in 
India and spent time in prison for sedition. However, despite all his 
intellectual and humanitarian passion, he remained an atheist until one 
day when he saw a wandering yogi instantaneously heal his brother of a 
life -threatening illness. From that point on Sri Aurobindo devoted his 
life to the yogic disciplines and, like Sri Yukteswar, through meditation 
he eventually learned to become, in his own words, "an explorer of the 
planes of consciousness. " 

It was not an easy task for Sri Aurobindo, and one of the most 
intractable obstacles he had to overcome to accomplish his goal was to 
learn how to silence the endless chatter of words and thoughts that flow 
unceasingly through the normal human mind. Anyone who has ever 
tried to empty his or her mind of all thought for even a moment or two 
knows how daunting an undertaking this is. But it is also a necessary one, 
for the yogic texts are quite explicit on this point. To plumb the subtler 
and more implicate regions of the psyche does indeed require a Bohmian 
shift of attention. Or as Sri Aurobindo put it, to discover the "new 
country within us" we must first learn how "to leave the old one behind. " 

It took Sri Aurobindo years to learn how to silence his mind and 



Traveling in the Superhologram 


travel inward, but once he succeeded he discovered the same vast 
territory encountered by all of the other Marco Polos of the spirit that we 
have looked at — a realm beyond space and time, composed of a 
"multicolored infinity of vibrations" and peopled by nonphysical beings 
so far in advance of human consciousness that they make us look like 
children. These beings can take on any form at will, said Sri Aurobindo, 
the same being appearing to a Christian as a Christian saint and to an 
Indian as a Hindu one, although he stressed that their purpose is not to 
deceive, but merely to make themselves more accessible "to a particular 
consciousness. " 

According to Sri Aurobindo, in their truest form these beings appear as 
"pure vibration." In his two-volume work, On Yoga, he even likens their 
ability to appear as either a form or a vibration, to the wave-particle 
duality discovered by "modern science." Sri Aurobindo also noted that in 
this luminous realm one is no longer restricted to taking in information in 
a "point-by -point" manner, but can absorb it "in great masses," and in a 
single glance perceive "large extensions of space and time." 

In fact, quite a number of Sri Aurobindo's assertions are indistin- 
guishable from many of Bohm's and Pribram's conclusions. He said that 
most human beings possess a "mental screen" that keeps us from seeing 
beyond "the veil of matter," but when one learns to peer beyond this veil 
one finds that everything is comprised of "different intensities of 
luminous vibrations." He asserted that consciousness is also composed of 
different vibrations and believed that all matter is to some degree 
conscious. Like Bohm, he even asserted that psychokinesis is a direct 
result of the fact that all matter is to some degree conscious. If matter 
were not conscious, no yogi could move an object with his mind because 
there would be no possibility of contact between the yogi and the object, 
Sri Aurobindo says. 

Most Bohmian of all are Sri Aurobindo's remarks about wholeness and 
fragmentation. According to Sri Aurobindo, one of the most important 
things one learns in "the great and luminous kingdoms of the Spirit," is 
that all separateness is an illusion, and all things are ultimately 
interconnected and whole. Again and again in his writings he stressed 
this fact, and held that it was only as one descended from the higher 
vibrational levels of reality to the lower that a "progressive law of 
fragmentation" took over. We fragment things because we exist at a 
lower vibration of consciousness and reality, says Sri Aurobindo, and it 
is our propensity for fragmentation that keeps us from experiencing 

the intensity of consciousness, joy, love, and delight for existence that 
are the norm in these higher and more subtle realms. 

Just as Bohm believes that it is not possible for disorder to exist in a 
universe that is ultimately unbroken and whole, Sri Aurobindo believed 
the same was true of consciousness. If a single point of the universe were 
totally unconscious, the whole universe would be totally unconscious, he 
said, and if we perceive a pebble at the side of the road or a grain of sand 
under our fingernail to be lifeless and dead, our perception is again 
illusory and brought on only by our somnambulistic inurement with 

Like Bohm, Sri Aurobindo's epiphanic understanding of wholeness 
also made him aware of the ultimate relativity of all truths and the 
arbitrariness of trying to divide the seamless holomovement up into 
"things." So convinced was he that any attempt to reduce the universe 
into absolute facts and unchangeable doctrine only led to distortion that 
he was even against religion, and all his life emphasized that the true 
spirituality came not from any organization or priesthood, but from the 
spiritual universe within: 

We must not only cut asunder the snare of the mind and the senses, but 
flee also from the snare of the thinker, the snare of the theologian and 
the church-builder, the meshes of the Word and the bondage of the Idea. 
All these are within us waiting to wall in the spirit with forms; but we 
must always go beyond, always renounce the lesser for the greater, the 
finite for the Infinite; we must be prepared to proceed from illumination 
to illumination, from experience to experience, from soul-state to soul- 
state Nor must we attach ourselves even to the truths we hold most 

securely, for they are but forms and expressions of the Ineffable who 
refuses to limit itself to any form or expression." 1 

But if the cosmos is ultimately ineffable, a farrago of multicolored 
vibrations, what are all the forms we perceive? What is physical reality? 
It is, said Sri Aurobindo, just "a mass of stable light." 92 

Survival in Infinity 

The picture of reality reported by NDEers is remarkably self-consistent 
and is corroborated by the testimony of many of the world's most 



talented mystics as well. Even more astonishing is that as breathtaking 
and foreign as these subtler levels of reality are to those of us who reside 
in the world's more "advanced" cultures, they are mundane and familiar 
territories to so-called primitive peoples. 

For example, Dr. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, an anthropologist who 
has lived with and studied a community of aborigines in Australia, points 
out that the aboriginal concept of the "dreamtime," a realm that 
Australian shamans visit by entering a profound trance, is almost 
identical to the afterlife planes of existence described in Western sources. 
It is the realm where human spirits go after death, and once there a 
shaman can converse with the dead and instantly access all knowledge. It 
is also a dimension in which time, space, and the other boundaries of 
earthly life cease to exist and one must learn to deal with infinity. 
Because of this, Australian shamans often refer to the afterlife as 
"survival in infinity." 311 

Holger Kaiweit, a German ethnopsychologist with degrees in both 
psychology and cultural anthropology, goes Thero one better. An expert 
on shamanism who is also active in near-death research, Kaiweit points 
out that virtually all of the world's shamanic traditions contain 
descriptions of this vast and extradimensional realm, replete with 
references to the life review, higher spiritual beings who teach and guide, 
food conjured up out of thought, and indescribably beautiful meadows, 
forests, and mountains. Indeed, not only is the ability to travel into the 
afterlife realm the most universal requirement for being a shaman, but 
NDEs are often the very catalyst that thrusts an individual into the role. 
For instance, the Oglala Sioux, the Seneca, the Siberian Yakut, the South 
American Guajiro, the Zulu, the Kenyan Kikuyu, the Korean Mu dang, 
the Indonesian Mentawai Islanders, and the Caribou Eskimo — all have 
traditions of individuals who became shamans after a life -threatening 
illness propelled them headlong into the afterlife realm. 

However, unlike Western NDEers for whom such experiences are 
disorientingly new, these shamanic explorers appear to have a far vaster 
knowledge of the geography of these subtler realms and are often able to 
return to them again and again. Why? Kaiweit believes it is because such 
experiences are a daily reality for such cultures. Whereas our society 
suppresses any thoughts or mention of death and dying, and has 
devalued the mystical by defining reality strictly in terms of the material, 
tribal peoples still have day-to-day contact with the psychic nature of 
reality. Thus, they have a better understanding 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


of the rules that govern these inner realms, says Kaiweit, and are much 
more skilled at navigating their territories. 94 

That these inner regions have been well traveled by shamanic peoples 
is evidenced by an experience anthropologist Michael Harner had among 
the Conibo Indians of the Peruvian Amazon. In 1960 the American 
Museum of Natural History sent Harner on a year-long expedition to 
study the Conibo, and while there he asked the Amazonian natives to tell 
him about their religious beliefs. They told him that if he really wished to 
learn, he had to take a shamanic sacred drink made from a 
hallucinogenic plant known as ayakuasca, the "soul vine." He agreed 
and after drinking the bitter concoction had an out-of-body experience in 
which he traveled a level of reality populated by what appeared to be the 
gods and devils of the Conibo's mythology. He saw demons with 
grinning crocodilian heads. He watched as an "energy -essence" rose up 
out of his chest and floated toward a dragon-headed ship manned by 
Egypti an-style figures with blue-jay heads; and he felt what he thought 
was the slow, advancing numbness of his own death. 

But the most dramatic experience he had during his spirit journey was 
an encounter with a group of winged, dragonlike beings that emerged 
from his spine. After they had crawled out of his body, they "projected" 
a visual scene in front of him in which they showed him what they said 
was the "true" history of the earth. Through a kind of "thought language" 
they explained that they were responsible for both the origin and 
evolution of all life on the planet. Indeed, they resided not only in human 
beings, but in all life, and had created the multitude of living forms that 
populates the earth to provide themselves with a hiding place from some 
undisclosed enemy in outer space (Harner notes that although the beings 
were almost like DNA, at the time, 1961, he knew nothing of DNA). 

After this concatenation of visions was over, Harner sought out a blind 
Conibo shaman noted for his paranormal talents to talk to him about the 
experience. The shaman, who had made many excursions into the spirit 
world, nodded occasionally as Harner related the events that had 
befallen him, but when he told the old man about the dragonlike beings 
and their claim that they were the true masters of the earth, the shaman 
smiled with amusement. "Oh, theylre always saying that. But they are 
only the Masters of Outer Darkness," he corrected. 

"I was stunned," says Harner. "What I had experienced was already 
familiar to this barefoot, blind shaman. Known to him from his 



own explorations of the same hidden world into which I had ventured." 
However, this was not the only shock Harner received. He also recounted 
his experience to two Christian missionaries who lived nearby, and was 
intrigued when they too seemed to know what he was talking about. After 
he finished they told him that some of his descriptions were virtually 
identical to certain passages in the Book of Revelation, passages that 
Harner, an atheist, had never read. 95 So it seems that the old Conibo 
shaman perhaps was not the only individual to have traveled the same 
ground Harner later and more falteringly covered. Some of the visions 
and "trips to heaven" described by Old and New Testament prophets may 
also have been shamanic journeys into the inner realm. 

Is it possible that what we have been viewing as quaint folklore and 
charming but naive mythology are actually sophisticated accounts of the 
cartography of the subtler levels of reality? Kalweit for one believes the 
answer is an emphatic yes, "In light of the revolutionary findings of 
recent research into the nature of dying and death, we can no longer look 
upon tribal religions and their ideas about the World of the Dead as 
limited conceptions," he says, "[Rather] the shaman should be 
considered as a most up-to-date and knowledgeable psychologist." 96 

An Undeniable Spiritual Radiance 

One last piece of evidence of the reality of the NDE is the transformative 
effect it has on those who experience it. Researchers have discovered that 
NDEers are almost always profoundly changed by their journey to the 
beyond. They become happier, more optimistic, more easygoing, and 
less concerned with material possessions. Most striking of all, their 
capacity to love expands enormously. Aloof husbands suddenly become 
warm and affectionate, workaholics start relaxing and devoting time to 
their families, and introverts become extroverts. These changes are often 
so dramatic that people who know the NDEer frequently remark that he 
or she has become an entirely different person. There are even cases on 
record of criminals completely reforming their ways, and 
fire-and-brimstone preachers replacing their message of damnation with 
one of unconditional love and compassion- 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


NDEers also become much more spiritually oriented. They return not 
only firmly convinced of the immortality of the human soul, but also 
with a deep and abiding sense that the universe is compassionate and 
intelligent, and this loving presence is always with them. However, this 
awareness does not necessarily result in their becoming more religious. 
Like Sri Aurobindo, many NDEers stress the importance of the 
distinction between religion and spirituality, and assert that it is the latter 
that has blossomed into greater fullness in their lives, not the former. 
Indeed, studies show that following their experience, NDEers display an 
increased openness to ideas outside their own religious background, such 
as reincarnation and Eastern religions. 97 

This widening of interests frequently extends to other areas as well. 
For instance, NDEers often develop a marked fascination for the types of 
subjects discussed in this book, in particular psychic phenomena and the 
new physics. One NDEer investigated by Ring, for example, was a driver 
of heavy equipment who displayed no interest in books or academic 
pursuits prior to his experience. However, during his NDE he had a 
vision of total knowledge, and although he was unable to recall the 
content of the vision after he recovered, various physics' terms started 
popping into his head. One morning not long after his experience he 
blurted out the word quantum. Later he announced cryptically, "Max 
Planck — you'll be hearing about him in the near future," and as time 
continued to pass, fragments of equations and mathematical symbols 
began to surface in his thoughts. 

Neither he nor his wife knew what the word quantum meant, or who 
Max Planck {widely viewed as the founding father of quantum physics) 
was until the man went to a library and looked the words up. But after 
discovering that he was not talking gibberish, he started to read 
voraciously, not only books on physics, but also on parapsychology, 
metaphysics, and higher consciousness; and he even enrolled in college 
as a physics major. The man's wife wrote a letter to Ring trying to 
describe her husband's transformation: 

Many times he says a word he has never heard before in our reality — it 
might be a foreign word of a different language — but learns ... it in 
relationship to the "light" theory. ... He talks about things faster than 
the speed of light and it's hard for me to understand — When [he] picks 
up a book on physics he already knows the answer and seems to feel 





The man also started developing various psychic abilities after his 
experience, which is not uncommon among NDEers. In 1982 Bruce 
Greyson, a psychiatrist at the University of Michigan and IANDS's 
director of research, gave sixty -nine NDEers a questionnaire designed 
to study this issue, and he found that there was an increase in virtually 
all of the psychic and psi-related phenomena he assessed." Phyllis 
Atwater, an Idaho housewife who became an NDE researcher follow- 
ing her own transformative NDE, has interviewed dozens of NDEers 
and has obtained similar findings. "Telepathy and healing gifts are 
common," she states. "So is 'remembering' the future. Time and space 
stop, and you live in a future sequence in detail. Then, when the event 
occurs, you recognize it." 100 

Moody believes that the profound and positive identity changes such 
individuals undergo is the most compelling evidence that NDEs are 
actually journeys into some spiritual level of reality. Ring agrees. "[At 
the core of the NDE] we find an absolute and undeniable spiritual 
radiance," he says. "This spiritual core is so awesome and overwhelm- 
ing that the person is at once and forever thrust into an entirely new 
mode of being." 101 

NDE researchers are not the only individuals who are beginning to 
accept the existence of this dimension and the spiritual component of 
the human race. Nobelist Brian Josephson, himself a longtime medita- 
tor, is also convinced that there are subtler levels of reality, levels that 
can be accessed through meditation and where, quite possibly, one 
travels after death. 303 

At a 1985 symposium on the possibility of life beyond biological 
death held at Georgetown University and convened by U.S. Senator 
Claiborne Pell, physicist Paul Davies expressed a similar openness. 
"We are all agreed that, at least insofar as human beings are con- 
cerned, mind is a product of matter, or put more accurately, mind finds 
expression through matter (specifically our brains). The lesson of the 
quantum is that matter can only achieve concrete, well-defined exis- 
tence in conjunction with mind. Clearly, if mind is pattern rather than 
substance, then it is capable of many different representations.'" 05 

Even psychoneuroimmunologist Candace Pert, another participant 
at the symposium, was receptive to the idea. "I think it is important 
to realize that information is stored in the brain, and it is conceivable 
to me that this information could transform itself into some other 
realm. Where does the information go after the destruction of the 
molecules (the mass) that compose it? Matter can neither be created 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


nor destroyed, and perhaps biological information flow cannot just 
disappear at death and must be transformed into another realm," she 

Is it possible that what Bohm has called the implicate level of reality 
is actually the realm of the spirit, the source of the spiritual radiance 
that has transfigured the mystics of all ages? Bohm himself does not 
dismiss the idea. The implicate domain "could equally well be called 
Idealism, Spirit, Consciousness," he states with typical 
matter-of-fact-ness. "The separation of the two — matter and 
spirit — is an abstraction. The ground is always one." 10 * 

Who Are the Beings of Light? 

Because most of the above remarks were made by physicists and not 
theologians, one cannot help but wonder if perhaps the interest in new 
physics displayed by Fung's NDEer is an indication of something 
deeper. If, as Bohm suggests, physics is beginning to make inroads in 
areas that were once exclusively the province of the mystic, is it 
possible that these encroachments have already been anticipated by 
the beings who inhabit the near-death realm? Is that why NDEers are 
given an insatiable hunger for such knowledge? Are they, and by 
proxy the rest of the human race, being prepared for some coming 
confluence between science and the spiritual? 

We will explore this possibility a little later. First, another question 
must be asked. If the existence of this higher dimension is no longer 
at issue, then what are its parameters? More specifically, who are the 
beings that inhabit it, and what is their society, dare one say their 
civilization, really like? 

These are, of course, difficult questions to answer. When Whitton 
tried to find out the identity of the beings who counseled people in the 
between-life state, he found the answer elusive. "The impression my 
subjects gave — the ones who could answer the question — was that 
these were entities who had completed their cycle of incarnations 
here," he says. 106 

After hundreds of journeys into the inner realm, and after inter- 
viewing dozens of other talented fellow OBEers on the matter, 
Monroe has also come up empty-handed. "Whatever they may be, 
[these beings] have the ability to radiate a warmth of friendliness that 



evokes complete trust," he observes, "Perceiving our thoughts is absurdly 
easy for [them]." And "the entire history of humankind and earth is 
available to them in the most minute detail." But Monroe, too, confesses 
ignorance when it comes to the ultimate identity of these nonphysical 
entities, save that their first order of business appears to A be "totally 
solicitous as to the well-being of the human beings with whom they are 
associated." 107 

Not muck more can be said about the civilizations of these subtle 
realms, save that individuals who are privileged enough to visit them 
universally report seeing many vast and celestially beautiful cities there. 
NDEers, yogic adepts, and ayahuasca-using shamans — all describe 
these mysterious metropolises with remarkable consistency. The 
twelfth-century Sufis were so familiar with them that they even gave 
several of them names. 

The most notable feature of these great cities is that they are brilliantly 
luminous. They are also frequently described as foreign in architecture, 
and so sublimely beautiful that, like all of the other features of these 
implicate dimensions, words fail to convey their grandeur. In describing 
one such city Swedenborg said that it was a place "of staggering 
architectural design, so beautiful that you would say this is the home and 
the source of the art itself." 108 

People who visit these cities also frequently assert that they have an 
unusual number of schools and other buildings associated with the 
pursuit of knowledge. Most of Whitton's subjects recalled spending at 
least some time hard at work in vast halls of learning equipped with 
libraries and seminar rooms while in the between-life state. 109 Many 
NDEers also report being shown "schools," "libraries," and "institutions 
of higher learning" during their experiences. 110 And one can even find 
references to great cities devoted to learning and reachable only by 
journeying into "the hidden depths of the mind" in eleventh-century 
Tibetan texts. Edwin Bernbaum, a Sanskrit scholar at the University of 
California at Berkeley, believes that James Hilton's novel Lost Horizon, 
in which he created the fictional community of Shangri-La, was actually 
inspired by one of these Tibetan legends.' " 

"Throughout my high-school and college years 1 had vivid and frequent dreams that I was 
attending classes on spiritual subjects at a strangely beautiful university in some sublime 
and otherworldly place. These were not anxiety dreams about going to school, but incredibly 
pleasant flying dreams in which I floated weightlessly to lectures on the human energy field 
and reincarnation. During these dreams 1 sometimes encountered people I had known in this 
life but who had died, and even people who identified themselves aa souls about to be reborn. 

Traveling in the Superhofograrn 


The only problem is that in an imaginal realm such descriptions don't 
mean very much. One can never be sure whether the spectacular 
architectural structures NDEers encounter are realities or just allegorical 
phantasms. For instance, both Moody and Ring have reported cases in 
which NDEers said that the buildings of higher learning they visited 
were not just devoted to knowledge, but were literally built out of 
knowledge."" This curious choice of words suggests that perhaps visits to 
these edifices are actually encounters with something so beyond human 
conception — perhaps a dynamic living cloud of pure knowledge, or what 
information becomes, as Pert puts it, after it has been transformed into 
another realm — that translating it into a hologram of a building or library 
is the only way the human mind can process it 

The same is true of the beings one encounters in the subtler dimensions. 
We can never know from their appearance alone what they really are. 
For example, George Russell, a well-known turn-of-the-century Irish 
seer and an extraordinarily talented OBEer, encountered many "beings 
of light" during what he called his journeys into the "inner world. " When 
asked once during an interview to describe what these beings looked like 
he stated: 

The first of these I saw I remember very clearly, and the manner of its 
appearance: mere was at first a dazale of light, and then 1 saw that this 
came from the heart of a tall figure with a body apparently shaped out 
of half- transparent or opalescent air, and throughout the body ran a 
radiant, electrical fire, to which the heart seemed the centre. Around the 
head of this being and through its waving luminous hair, which was 
blown all about the body like living strands of gold, there appeared 
naming wing-like auras. From the being itself light seemed to stream 
outwards in every direction; and the effect left on me after the vision was 
one of extraordinary lightness, joy ousness, or ecstasy. 113 

Intriguingly, I have met several other individuals, usually people with more than normal 
psychic ability, who have also had these dreams (one, a talented Texas clairvoyant named 
Jim Gordon, was so baffled by the experience that he often asked his nonplussed mother why 
he had to go to school twice, once during the day with all the other children, and once at 
night while he slept). Tt is relevant to mention here that Monroe and numerous other OBE 
researchers believe that flying dreams are actually just poorly remembered OBEs. making 
me wonder if perhaps some of us, at least, are visiting these incorporeal schools even while we 
are alive. If anyone reading this book has also had such experiences. I would be very 
interested in hearing about them. 




On the other hand, Monroe asserts that once he has been in the 
presence of one of these nonphysical entities for a while, it 

h f PercdveS notlung, ajthou^ he contmues to 

ii that h * 

*!* V* V* V* V* 

«S A A A A 


sksksksksksk , 


discards !L aPAranC J- 

SS Si 

asked When a journey er to the inner dimensions encounters a being 01 
light, a that being a reality or just an allegorical phantasm? The answer is, 
of course, that it is a bit of both, for in a holographic ZTIh" ^tm™ *,, 
l]lus ions, hologramlike images con-hS i ,! mteract!ra of the consciousness 
present, but illusions oased, as Pribram says, on something that is there. 

f ^if if* 3 ."" ' * * app T t0 us —p 1 " 3 * form but always has its source 
in something meltable, in the implicate 

img meltable, in tne impl 
We can take heart in the fact that the hologramlike images our 

me wp*«-*n* >edge; we convert lt m to a school or 

nv V ?*f 7 DE r r meets a woman TM^whTMh* \ (< T( 

ove/hate reIationsh lp , he sees her as half rose, half cobra, a symbol hat 

stil conveys the quintessence of her character; and when ££ 
Z^l^^^l^ m ^™ k "fat nonphysical consciousnesses, they 
seeTheni as luminous and. angelic beings 

thi\r eni !wl e ' yenUy °™- W ^ ' a * deduce from their behavior that they 

' ' to the 


altll T ~~ fmShed remCA tmg, or something that is 
altogether beyond human comprehension. To speculate further would 
be presumptuous in that it would not only be tackling a qu sSat 
housands of years of human history have failed to resolve but woufd 
ak<ngnore Sn Aurobindo's warning against turning spiriual under 
stendmgs mto rehgious ones. As science gathers more evidence 
answer will most assuredly become clearer, but until then, the ques 
turn of who and what these beings are remains open. q 


The Omnijective Universe 

tnmlE A . V^^T* ^toDWhw.™ hologramlike 
apparitions sculptured by our behets. It appears that on 

Traveling in the Superhologram 275 

occasion we can even have such experiences at our own level of exis- 
tence. For example, philosopher Michael Grosso believes that miracu- 
lous appearances of the Virgin Mary may also be hologramlike projec- 
tions created by the collective beliefs of the human race. One "Marian" 
vision that is especially holographic in flavor is the well-known appear- 
ance of the Virgin in Knock, Ireland, in 1879. On that occasion fourteen 
people saw three glowing and eerily motionless figures consisting of 
Mary, Joseph, and St John the Evangelist (identified because he closely 
resembled a statue of the saint in a nearby village) standing in a meadow 
next to the local church. These brilliantly luminous figures were so real 
that when witnesses approached, they could even read the lettering on a 
book St. John was holding. But when one of the women present tried to 
embrace the Virgin, her arms closed on empty air. "The figures appeared 
so full and lifelike I could not understand why my hands could not feel 
what was so plain and distinct to my sight," the woman later wrote. 115 

Another impressively holographic Marian vision is the equally famous 
appearance of the Virgin in Zeitoun, Egypt. The sightings began in 1968 
when two Moslem automobile mechanics saw a luminous apparition of 
Mary standing on the ledge of the central dome of a Coptic church in the 
poor Cairo suburb. For the next three years glowing three-dimensional 
images of Mary, Joseph, and the Christ Child appeared weekly over the 
church, sometimes hovering in midair for as long as six hours. 

Unlike the figures at Knock, the Zeitoun apparitions moved about and 
waved at the crowds of people who regularly gathered to see them. 
However, they too had many holographic aspects. Their appearance was 
always heralded by a brilliant flash of light. Like holograms shifting from 
their frequency aspects and slowly coming into focus, they were at first 
amorphous and slowly coalesced into human shape. They were often 
accompanied by doves "formed of pure light" that soared for great 
distances over the crowd, but never flapped their wings. Most telling of 
all, after three years of manifestations and as interest in the phenomenon 
started to wane, the Zeitoun figures also waned, becoming hazier and 
hazier until, in their last several appearances, they were little more than 
clouds of luminous fog. Nonetheless, during their peak, the figures were 
seen by literally hundreds of thousands of witnesses and were 
extensively photographed. "I've interviewed quite a number of these 
people, and when you hear them talk about what they saw you can't get 
rid of the feeling that they're 



describing some sort of holographic projection," says Grosso. 11 * 

In his tiought-provoking book The Final Choice, Grosso says that 
after stucying the evidence he is convinced that such visions are not 
appearances of the historical Mary, but are actually psychic holographic 
projections created by the collective unconscious. Interestingly, notall of 
the Marian apparitions are silent. Some, like the manifestations at Fatima 
and Lourdes, speak, and when they do their message s invariably a 
warning of impending apocalypse if we mortals do no 1 , mend our ways. 
Grosso interprets this as evidence that the human collective unconscious 
is deeply disturbed by the violent impact modern science has had on 
human life and on the ecology of the earth. Our collective dreams are, in 
essence, warning us of the possibility of our own self-destruction. 

Others nave also agreed that belief in Mary is the motivating force that 
causes these projections to coalesce into being. For instance, Rogo points 
out that in 1925, while the Coptic church that became the site of tht 
Zeitoun manifestations was being built, the philanthropist responsible 
for its construction had a dream in which the Virgin told him she would 
appear at the church as soon as it was completed. She did not appear at 
the prescribed time, but the prophecy was well known in the community. 
Thus "there existed a forty-year-old tradition that a Marian visitation 
would eventually take place at the church, " says Rogo. 'These 
preoccupations may have gradually built up a psychic 'blueprint' of the 
Virgin within the church itself, i.e., an ever-increasing pool of psychic 
energy created by the thoughts of the Zeitouniaris which in 1 968 became 
so high-pitched that an image of the Virgin Mary burst into physical 
reality!" 117 In previous writings I, too, have offered a similar explanation 
of Marian visions. : 18 

There is evidence that some UFOs may also be some kind of holo- 
gramlike phenomenon. When people first started reporting sightings of 
what appeared to be spacecraft from other planets in the late 1940s, 
researchers who delved deeply enough into the reports to realize that at 
least some of them had to be taken seriously assumed that they were 
exactly what they appeared to be — glimpses of intelligently guided crafts 
from more advanced and probably extraterrestrial civilizations. However, 
as encounters with UFOs become more widespread — especially those 
involving contact with UFO occupants — and data accumulates, it 
becomes increasingly apparent to many researchers that these so-called 
spacecraft are not extraterrestrial in origin. 

Some of the features of the phenomenon that indicate they are not 

Traveling in the Super-hologram 


extraterrestrial include the following: First, there are too many sightings; 
literally thousands of encounters with UFOs and their occupants have 
been documented, so many that it is difficult to believe they could all be 
actual visits from other planets. Second, UFO occupants often do not 
possess traits one would expect in a truly extraterrestrial Hfeform; too 
many of them are described as humanoid beings who breathe our air, 
display no fear of contracting earthly viruses, are well adapted to the 
earth's gravity and the sun's electromagnetic emissions, display 
recognizable emotions in their faces, and talk our language — all of which 
are possible but unlikely traits in truly extraterrestrial visitors. 

Third, they do not behave as extraterrestrial visitors. Instead of making 
the proverbial landing on the White House lawn, they appear to farmers 
and stranded motorists. They chase jets but don't attack. They dart 
around in the sky allowing dozens and sometimes hundreds of witnesses 
to see them, but they show no interest in making any formal contact. And 
often, when they contact individuals their behavior still seems illogical. 
For instance, one of the most commonly reported types of contact is that 
which involve some sort of medical examination. And yet, arguably, a 
civilization that possesses the technological capability to travel almost 
incomprehensible tracts of outer space would most assuredly possess the 
scientific wherewithal to obtain such information without any physical 
contact at alt or, at the very least, without having to abduct the scores of 
people who appear to be legitimate victims of this mysterious 

Finally, and most curious of all, UFOs do not even behave as physical 
objects do. They have been watched on radar screens to make instant 
ninety-degree-angle turns while traveling at enormous speeds — an antic 
that would rip a physical object apart They can change size, instantly 
vanish into nothingness, appear out of nowhere, change color, and even 
change shape (traits that are also displayed by their occupants). In short, 
their behavior is not at all what one would expect from a physical object, 
but of something quite different, something with which we have become 
more than a little familiar in this book. As astrophysicist Dr. Jacques 
Vallee, one of the world's most respected UFO researchers and the model 
for the character LaCombe in the film Close Encounters of the Third 
Kind, stated recently, "It is the behavior of an image, or a holographic 
projection." 11 * 

As the nonphysical and hologramlike qualities of UFOs become 
increasingly apparent to researchers, some have concluded that rather 



than being from other star systems, UFOs are actually visitors from other 
dimensions, or levels of reality (it is important to note that not all 
researchers agree with this point of view, and some remain convinced 
that UFOs are extraterrestrial in origin). However, this explanation still 
does not adequately explain many of the other bizarre aspects of the 
phenomenon, such as why UFOs aren't making formal contact, why they 
behave so absurdly, and so on. 

Indeed, the inadequacy of the extra dimensional explanation, at least 
in the terms in which it was initially couched, only becomes more 
glaring as still further unusual aspects of the UFO phenomenon come 
into focus. One of the more baffling of these is growing evidence that 
UFO encounters are less of an objective experience and more of a 
subjective, or psychological, one. For instance, the well-known "inter- 
rupted journey" of Betty and Barney Hill, one of the most thoroughly 
documented UFO abduction cases on record, seems as if it were an 
actual alien contact in all ways except one: the commander of the UFO 
was dressed in a Nazi uniform, a fact that does not make sense if the 
Hills' abductors were truly visitors from an alien civilization, but it does 
if the event was psychological in nature and more akin to a dream or 
hallucination, experiences that often contain obvious symbols and 
disconcerting flaws in logic. 120 

Other UFO encounters are even more surreal and dreamlike in 
character, and in the literature one can find cases in which UFO entities 
sing absurd songs or throw strange objects (such as potatoes) at 
witnesses; cases that start out as straightforward abductions aboard 
spacecraft but end up as hallucinogenic journeys through a series of 
Dantesque realities; and cases in which humanoid aliens shapeshift into 
birds, giant insects, and other phantasmagoric creatures. 

As early as 1959, and even before much of this evidence was in, the 
psychological and archetypal component of the UFO phenomenon in- 
spired Carl Jung to propose that "flying saucers" were actually a product 
of the collective human unconscious and a kind of modern myth in the 
making. In 1969, and as the mythic dimension of UFO experiences 
became even clearer, Vallee took the observation a step further. In his 
landmark book Passport to Magonia he points out that, far from being a 
new phenomenon, UFOs actually appear to be a very old phenomenon in 
a new guise and greatly resemble various folkloric traditions, from 
descriptions of elves and gnomes in European countries to medieval 
accounts of angels to the supernatural beings described in Native 
American legends. 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


The absurd behavior of UFO entities is the same as the mischievous 
behavior of elves and fairies in Celtic legends, the Norse gods, and the 
trickster figures among the Native Americans, says Vallee. When 
stripped to their underlying archetypes, all such phenomena are part of 
the same vast, pulsating something, a something that changes its 
appearance to suit the culture and time period in which it manifests, but 
that has been with the human race for a long, long time. What is that 
something? In Passport to Magonia Vallee provides no substantive 
answer and says only that it appears to be intelligent, timeless, and to be 
the phenomenon on which all myths are based. 12 ' 

What, then, are UFOs and related phenomena? In Passport to Ma- 
gonia Vallee says that we cannot rule out the possibility that they are the 
expression of some extraordinarily advanced nonhuman intelligence, an 
intelligence so beyond us that its logic appears to us only as absurdity. 
But if this is true, how are we to explain the conclusions of mythology 
experts from Mircea Eliade to Joseph Campbell that myths are an 
organic and necessary expression of the human race, as inevitable a 
human by-product as language and art? Can we really accept that the 
collective human psyche is so barren and jejune that it developed myths 
only as a response to another intelligence? 

And yet, if UFOs and related phenomena are merely psychic projections, 
how are we to explain the physical traces they leave behind, the burnt 
circles and deep impressions found at the sites of landings, the 
unmistakable tracks they make on radar screens, and the scars and 
incision marks they leave on the people on whom they perform their 
medical examinations? In an article published in 1976,1 proposed that 
such phenomena are difficult to categorize because we are trying to 
hammer them into a picture of reality that is fundamentally incorrect, 
Given that quantum physics has shown us that mind and matter are 
inextricably linked, I suggested that UFOs and related phenomena are 
further evidence of this ultimate lack of division between the 
psychological and physical worlds. They are indeed a product of the 
collective human psyche, but they are also quite real. Put another way, 
they are something the human race has not yet learned to comprehend 
properly, a phenomenon that is neither subjective nor objective but 
"omnijective" — a term I coined to refer to this unusual state of existence 
(I was unaware at the time that Corbin had already coined the term 
imaginal to describe the same blurred status of reality, only in the context 
of the mystical experiences of the Sufis). This point of view has become 
increasingly prevalent among re- 



searchers. In a recent article Ring argues that UFO encounters are 
imaginal experiences and are similar not only to the confrontations with 
the real but mind-created world individuals experience during NDEs, but 
also to the mythic realities shamans encounter during journeys through 
the subtler dimensions. They are, in short, further evidence that reality is 
a multilayered and mind-generated hologram. 123 

"I'm finding that I'm drawn more and more to points of view that allow 
me not only to acknowledge and honor the reality of these different 
experiences, but also to see the connections between realms that, for the 
most part, have been studied by different categories of scholars," states 
Ring. "Shamanism tends to be thrown into anthropology. UFOs tend to 
be thrown into whatever ufology is. NDEs are studied by 
parapsychologists and medical people. And Stan Grof studies 
psychedelic experiences from a transpersonai psychology perspective. I 
think there's good reason to hope that the imaginal can be, and the 
holographic might still prove to be, perspectives that can allow one to see 
not the identities, but the linkages and commonalities between these 
different types of experiences." lA So convinced is Ring of the profound 
relationship among these at first seemingly disparate phenomena that he 
has recently obtained a grant to do a comparative study on people who 
have had UFO encounters and people who have had NDEs. 

Dr. Peter 5 1 Rojcewicz, a folklorist at the Juilliard School in New York 
City, has also concluded that UFOs are omnijective. In fact, he believes 
the time has come for folklorists to realize that probably all of the 
phenomena discussed by Vallee in Passport to Magonia are as real as 
they are symbolic of processes deep in the human psyche. "There exists a 
continuum of experiences where reality and imagination imperceptibly 
flow into each other," he states. Rojcewicz acknowledges that this 
continuum is further evidence of the Bohmian unity of all things and 
feels that, in tight of the evidence that such phenomena are 
imaginal/omnijective, it is no longer defensible for folklorists to treat 
them simply as beliefs. 125 

Numerous other researchers, including Vallee, Grosso, and Whitley 
Strieber, author of the bestselling book Communion and one of the most 
famous and articulate victims of a UFO abduction, have also 
acknowledged the seeming omnijective nature of the phenomenon. As 
Strieber states, encounters with UFO beings "may be our first true 
quantum discovery in the large-scale world: The very act of observing 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


it may be creating it as a concrete actuality, with sense, definition, and a 
consciousness of its own." 126 

In short, there is growing agreement among researchers of this 
mysterious phenomenon that the imaginal is not confined to the afterlife 
realm, but has spilled over into the seeming solidity of our 
sticks-and-stones world. No longer confined to the visions of shamans, 
the old gods have sailed their celestial barks right up to the doorstep of 
the computer generation, only instead of dragon-headed ships their 
vessels are spaceships, and they have traded in their blue-jay heads for 
space helmets. Perhaps we should have anticipated this spillover long 
ago, this merging of the Land of the Dead with our own realm, for as 
Orpheus, the poet-musician of Greek mythology, once warned, "The 
gates of Pluto must not be unlocked, within is a people of dreams." 

As significant as this realization is — that the universe is not objective but 
omnijective, that just beyond the pale of our own safe neighborhood lies a 
vast otherness, a numinous landscape (more properly a mindscape) as 
much a part of our own psyche as it is terra incognita — it still does not shed 
light on the deepest mystery of all. As Carl Raschke, a faculty member in 
the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Denver, notes, "In 
the omnijective cosmos, where UFOs have their place alongside quasars 
and salamanders, the issue of the veridical, or hallucinatory, status of 
glowing, circular appari- -tions, becomes moot. The problem is not 
whether they exist, or in what sense they exist, but what ultimate aim they 

ii 127 


In other words, what is the final identity of these beings? Again, as 
with entities encountered in the near-death realm, there are no clear-cut 
answers. On one end of the spectrum, researchers such as Ring and 
Grosso lean toward the idea that, despite their impingements in the world 
of matter, they are more psychic projection than nonhuman intelligence. 
Grosso, for instance, thinks that, like Marian visions, they are further 
evidence that the psyche of the human race is in a state of unrest. As he 
states, "UFOs and other extraordinary phenomena are manifestations of 
a disturbance in the collective unconscious of the human species." 128 

On the other end of the spectrum are those researchers who maintain 
that, despite their archetypal characteristics, UFOs are more alien 
intelligence than psychic projection. For example, Raschke believes that 
UFOs are "a holographic materialization from a conjugate dimension of 
the universe" and that this interpretation "certainly must take precedence 
over the psychic projection hypothesis, which flounders 



when one examines thoughtfully the astounding, vivid, complex, and 
consistent features of the 'aliens' and their 'spaceships' described by 
abductees." 129 

Vallee is also in this camp: "I believe that the UFO phenomenon is 
one of the ways through which an alien form of intelligence of incred- 
ible complexity is communicating with us symbolically. There is no 
indication that it is extraterrestrial. Instead, there is mounting evidence 
that it. .. [comes from] other dimensions beyond spacetime; from a 
multiverse which is all around us, and of which we have stubbornly 
refused to consider in spite of the evidence available to us for 
centuries." 130 

As for my own feelings, I believe that probably no single explanation 
can account for all of the varied aspects of the UFO phenomenon. Given 
the apparent vastness of the subtler levels of reality, it is easy for me to 
believe that there are no doubt countless nonphysical species in the 
higher vibratory realms. Although the abundance of UFO sightings may 
bode against their being extraterrestrial — given the obstacle posed by 
the immense interstellar distances separating the Earth from the other 
stars in the galaxy — in a holographic universe, a universe in which there 
may be an infinity of realities occupying the same space as our own 
world, it ceases not only to be a sticking point, but may in fact be 
evidence of just how unfathomably abundant with intelligent life the 
superhologram is. 

The truth is that we simply do not have the information necessary to 
assess how many nonphysical species are sharing our own space. 
Although the physical cosmos may turn out to be an ecological Sahara, 
the spaceless and timeless expanses of the inner cosmos may be as rich 
with life as the rain forest and the coral reef. After all, research into 
NDEs and shamanic experiences has so far taken us only just inside the 
borders of this cloud-shrouded realm. We do not yet know how large its 
continents are or how many oceans and mountain ranges it contains. 

And if we are being visited by beings who are as insubstantial and 
plastic in form as the bodies OBEers find themselves in after they have 
exteriorized, it is not at all surprising that they might appear in a 
chameieonlike multitude of shapes. In fact, their actual appearance may 
be so beyond our comprehension that it may be our own hoU> 
graphically organized minds that give them these shapes. Just as we 
convert the beings of light encountered during NDEs into religious 
historical personages, and clouds of pure information into libraries 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


and institutions of learning, our minds may also be sculpting the 
outward appearance of the UFO phenomenon. 

It is interesting to note that if this is the case, it means that the true 
reality of these beings is apparently so transmundane and strange that we 
have to plumb the deepest regions of our folk memories and 
mythological unconscious to find the necessary symbols to give them 
form. It also means that we must be exceedingly careful in interpreting 
their actions. For example, the medical examinations that are the 
centerpiece of so many UFO abductions may be only a symbolic repre- 
sentation of what is going on. Rather than probing our physical bodies, 
these nonphysical intelligences actually may be probing some portion of 
us for which we currently have no labels, perhaps the subtle anatomy of 
our energy selves or even our very souls. Such are the problems one 
faces if the phenomenon is indeed an omnijective manifestation of a 
nonhuman intelligence. 

On the other hand, if it is possible for the faith of the citizens of Knock 
and Zeitoun to cause luminous images of the Virgin to coalesce into 
existence, for the minds of physicists to dabble around with the reality of 
the neutrino, and for yogis such as Sai Baba to materialize physical 
objeets out of thin air, it only stands to reason that we would also find 
ourselves awash with holographic projections of our beliefs and 
mythologies. At least some anomalous experiences may fall into this 

For instance, history tells us that Constantine and his soldiers saw an 
enormous flaming cross in the sky, a phenomenon that seems to be 
nothing more than a psychic exteriorization of the emotions the army 
responsible for nothing short of the Christianization of the pagan world 
was feeling on the eve of their historic undertaking. The well-known 
manifestation of the Angels of Mons, in which hundreds of World War I 
British soldiers saw an immense apparition of Saint George and a 
squadron of angels in the sky while fighting what was at first a losing 
battle at the front, in Mons, Belgium, also appears to fall into the 
category of psychic projection. 

It is clear to me that what we are calling UFO and other folkloric 
experiences are really a wide range of phenomena and probably include 
all of the above. I have also long been of the opinion that these two 
explanations are not mutually exclusive. It may be that Constan A tine's 
flaming cross was also a manifestation of an extradimensiona) 
intelligence. In other words, when our collective beliefs and emotions 
become high-pitched enough to create a psychic projection, perhaps 



what we are really doing is opening a doorway between this world and 
the next. Perhaps the only time these intelligences can appear and 
interact with us is when our own potent beliefs create a kind of psychic 
niche for them. 

Another concept from the new physics may be relevant here. After 
acknowledging that consciousness is the agent that allows a subatomic 
particle such as an electron to pop into existence, we should not 
therefore jump to the conclusion that we are the sole agents in this 
creative process, cautions University of Texas physicist John Wheeler. 
We are creating subatomic particles and hence the entire universe, says 
Wheeler, but they are also creating us. Each creates the other in what he 
calls a " self -reference cosmology." 131 Seen in this light, UFO entities 
may very well be archetypes from the collective unconscious of the 
human race, but we may also be archetypes in their collective 
unconscious. We may be as much a part of their deep psychic processes 
as they are of ours. Strieber has also echoed this point and says that the 
universe of the beings who abducted him and our own are "spinning 
each other together" in an act of cosmic communion. 132 

The spectrum of events we are lumping into the broad category of UFO 
encounters may also include phenomena with which we are not even yet 
familiar. For instance, researchers who believe the phenomenon is some 
kind of psychic projection invariably assume that it is a projection of the 
collective human mind. However, as we have seen in this book, in a 
holographic universe we can no longer view consciousness as confined 
solely to the brain. The fact that Carol Dryer was able to communicate 
with my spleen and tell me that it was upset because I had yelled at it 
indicates that other organs in our body also possess their own unique 
forms of mentality. Psychoneuroimmunologists say the same about the 
cells in our immune system, and according to Bohm and other physicists, 
even subatomic particles possess this trait. As outlandish as it sounds, 
some aspects of UFOs and related phenomena may be projections of 
these collective mentalities. Certain features of Michael Harner's 
encounter with the dragonlike beings certainly suggest that he was 
confronting a kind of visuai manifestation of the intelligence of the DNA 
molecule. In this same vein Strieber has suggested the possibility that 
UFO beings are what "the force of evolution looks like when it's applied 
to a conscious mind." 1 ™ We must remain open to all of these 
possibilities. In a universe that is conscious right down to its very depths, 
animals, plants, even matter itself may all be participating in the creation 
of these phenomena. 

Traveling in the Superhologram 


One thing that we do know is that in a holographic universe, a universe 
in which separateness ceases to exist and the innermost processes of the 
psyche can spill over and become as much a part of the objective 
landscape as the flowers and the trees, reality itself becomes little more 
than a mass shared dream. In the higher dimensions of existence, these 
dreamlike aspects become even more apparent, and indeed numerous 
traditions have commented on this fact. The Tibetan Book of the Dead 
repeatedly stresses the dreamlike nature of the afterlife realm, and this is 
also, of course, why the Australian aborigines refer to it as the dreamtime. 
Once we accept this notion, that reality at all levels is omnijective and has 
the same ontological status as a dream, the question becomes, Whose 
dream is it? 

Of the religious and mythological traditions that address this question, 
most give the same answer, It is the dream of a single divine intelligence, 
of God. The Hindu Vedas and yogic texts assert again and again that the 
universe is God's dream. In Christianity the sentiment is summed up in 
the oft repeated saying, we are all thoughts in the mind of God, or as the 
poet Keats put it, we are all part of God's "long immortal dream." 

But are we being dreamed by a single divine intelligence, by God, or 
are we being dreamed by the collective consciousness of all things — by 
all the electrons, 2 particles, butterflies, neutron stars, sea cucumbers, 
human and nonhuman intelligences in the universe? Here again we 
collide headlong into the bars of our own conceptual limitations, for in a 
holographic universe this question is meaningless. We cannot ask if the 
part is creating the whole, or the whole is creating the part because the 
part, is the whole. So whether we call the collective consciousness of all 
things "God," or simply "the consciousness of all things," it doesn't 
change the situation. The universe is sustained by an act of such 
stupendous and ineffable creativity that it simply cannot be reduced to 
such terms. Again it is a self -reference cosmology. Or as the Kalahari 
Bushmen so eloquently put it, "The dream is dreaming itself." 

Return to the Dreamtime 

Only human beings have come to a point where they no longer 
know why they exist. They don't use their brains and they have 
forgotten the secret knowledge of therr bodies, their senses, or 
their dreams. They don't use the knowledge the spirit has put into 
every one of them; they are not even aware of this, and so they 
stumble along blindly on the rood to nowhere — a paved highway 
which they themselves bulldoze and make smooth so that they 
can get faster to the big empty hole which they'll find at the end, 
waiting to swallow them up. It's a quick comfortable 
superhighway, but I know where it leads to. I've seen it. I've been 
there in my vision and it makes me shudder to think about it. 

— the Lakota shaman Lame Deer 
Lame Deer Seeker of Visions 

Where does the holographic model go from here? Before examining 
the possible answers, we might want to see where the question has 
been before. In this book I have referred to the holographic concept 
as a new theory, and this is true in the sense that it is the first time it 
has been presented in a scientific context. But as we have seen, 
several aspects of this theory have already been foreshadowed in 
various ancient traditions. They are not the only such foreshadowings, 
which is intriguing, for it suggests that others have also found reason 


Return to the Dreamtime 


to view the universe as holographic, or at least to intuit its holographic 

For example, Bohm's idea that the universe can be viewed as the 
compound of two basic orders, the implicate and the explicate, can be 
found in many other traditions. The Tibetan Buddhists call these two 
aspects the void and nonvoid. The nonvoid is the reality of visible 
objects. The void, like the implicate order, is the birthplace of all things 
in the universe, which pour out of it in a "boundless flux." However, 
only the void is real and all forms in the objective world are illusory, 
existing merely because of the unceasing flux between the two or- 
ders. 1 

In turn, the void is described as "subtle," "indivisible," and "free 
from distinguishing characteristics." Because it is seamless totality it 
eannot be described in words. 2 Properly speaking, even the nonvoid 
cannot be described in words because it, too, is a totality in which 
consciousness and matter and all other things are indissoluble and 
whole. Herein lies a paradox, for despite its illusory nature the nonvoid 
still contains "an infinitely vast complex of universes." And yet its 
indivisible aspects are always present. As the Tibet scholar John 
Blo-feld states, "In a universe thus composed, everything 
interpenetrates, and is interpenetrated by, everything else; as with the 
void, so with the non-void — the part is the whole." 8 

The Tibetans prefigured some of Pribram's thinking as well. Accord- 
ing to Milarepa, an eleventh-century Tibetan yogin and the most re- 
nowned of the Tibetan Buddhist saints, the reason we are unable to 
perceive the void directly is because our unconscious mind (or, as 
Milarepa puts it, our "inner consciousness") is far too "conditioned" 
in its perceptions. This conditioning not only keeps us from seeing 
what he calls "the border between mind and matter," or what we 
would call the frequency domain, but also causes us to form a body 
for ourselves when we are in the between-life state and no longer have 
a body. "In the invisible realm of the heavens ... the illusory mind is 
the great culprit," writes Milarepa, who counseled his disciples to 
practice "perfect seeing and contemplation" in order to realize this 
"Ultimate Reality." 4 

Zen Buddhists also recognize the ultimate indivisibility of reality, 
and indeed the main objective of Zen is to learn how to perceive this 
wholeness. In their book Games Zen Masters Play, and in words that 
could have been lifted right from one of Bohm's papers, Robert Sohl 
and Audrey Carr state, "To confuse the indivisible nature of reality 



with the conceptual pigeonholes of language is the basic ignorance 
from which Zen seeks to free us. The ultimate answers to existence 
are not to be found in intellectual concepts and philosophies, however 
sophisticated, but rather in a level of direct nonconceptual experience 
[of reality]." 5 

The Hindus call the implicate level of reality Brahman. 6 Brahman 
is formless but is the birthplace of all forms in visible reality, which 
appear out of it and then enfold back into it in endless flux. 7 Like 
Bohm, who says that the implicate order can just as easily be called 
spirit, the Hindus sometimes personify this level of reality and 
say -that it is composed of pure consciousness. Thus, consciousness is 
not only a subtler form of matter, but it is more fundamental than 
matter; and in the Hindu cosmogony it is matter that has emerged from 
consciousness, and not the other way around. Or as the Vedas put it, 
the physical world is brought into being through both the "veiling" and 
"projecting" powers of consciousness." 

Because the material universe is only a second-generation reality, 
a creation of veiled consciousness, the Hindus say that it is transitory 
and unreal, or maya. As the Svetasvatara Upanishad states, "One 
should know that Nature is illusion (maya), and that Brahman is the 
illusion maker. This whole world is pervaded with beings that are 
parts of him." 9 Similarly, the Kena Upanishad says that Brahman is 
an uncanny something "which changes its form every moment from 
human shape to a blade of grass." 1 

Because everything unfolds out of the irreducible totality of Brah- 
man, the world is also a seamless whole, say the Hindus, and it is again 
maya that keeps us from realizing there is ultimately no such thing 
as separateness. "Maya severs the united consciousness so that the 
object is seen as other than the self and then as split up into the 
multitudinous objects in the universe," says the Vedic scholar Sir John 
Woodroffe. "And there is such objectivity as long as [humanity's] 
consciousness is veiled or contracted. But in the ultimate basis of 
experience the divergence has gone, for in it lie, in undifferentiated 
mass, experiencer, experience, and the experienced." 11 

This same concept can be found in Judaic thought. According to 
Kabbalistic tradition "the entire creation is an iilusory projection of 
the transcendental aspects of God," says Leo Schaya, a Swiss expert 
on the Kabbalah. However, despite its illusory nature, it is not com- 
plete nothingness, "for every reflection of reality, even remote broken 
up and transient, necessarily possesses something of its cause." 2 The 

Return to the Dreamtime 


idea that the creation set into motion by the God of Genesis is an 
illusion is reflected even in the Hebrew language, for as the Zohar, a 
thirteenth-century Kabbalistic commentary on the Torah and the most 
famous of the esoteric Judaic texts, notes, the verb baro, "to create," 
implies the idea of "creating an illusion." 13 

There are many holographic concepts in shamanistic thinking as 
well. The Hawaiian kahunas say that everything in the universe is 
infinitely interconnected and that this interconnectivity can almost be 
thought of as a web. The shaman, recognizing the interconnectedness 
of all things, sees himself at the center of this web and thus capable of 
affecting every other part of the universe (it is interesting to note that 
the concept of maya is also frequently likened to a web in Hindu 
thought). - 1 

Like Bohm, who says that consciousness always has its source in the 
implicate, the aborigines believe that the true source of the mind is in 
the transcendent reality of the dreamtime. Normal people do not real- 
ize this and believe that their consciousness is in their bodies. How- 
ever, shamans know this is not true, and that is why they are able to 
make contact with the subtler levels of reality. 15 

The Dogon people of the Sudan also believe that the physical world 
is the product of a deeper and more fundamental level of reality and 
is perpetually flowing out of and then streaming back into this more 
primary aspect of existence. As one Dogon elder described it, "To 
draw up and then return what one had drawn — that is the life of the 
world." 16 

In fact, the implicate/explicate idea can be found in virtually all 
shamanic traditions. States Douglas Sharon in his book Wizard of the 
Four Winds: A Shaman's Story: "Probably the central concept of 
shamanism, wherever in the world it is found, is the notion that under- 
lying all the visible forms in the world, animate and inanimate, there 
exists a vital essence from which they emerge and by which they are 
nurtured. Ultimately everything returns to this ineffable, mysterious, 
impersonal unknown." 1 

The Candle and the Laser 

Certainly one of the most fascinating properties of a piece of holo- 
graphic film is the nonlocal way an image is distributed in its surface. 



As we have seen, Bohm believes the universe itself is also organized in 
this manner and employs a thought experiment involving a fish and two 
television monitors to explain why he believes the universe is similarly 
nonlocal. Numerous ancient thinkers also appear to have recognized, or 
at least intuited, this aspect of reality. The twelfth-century Sufis summed 
it up by saying simply that "the macrocosm is the microcosm," a kind of 
earlier version of Blake's notion of seeing the world in a grain of sand. 18 
The Greek philosophers Anaximenes of Miletus, Pythagoras, Heraclitus, 
and Plato; the ancient Gnostics; the pre-Christian Jewish philosopher 
Philo Jndaeus; and the medieval Jewish philosopher Maimonides — all 
embraced the macrocosm-microcosm idea. 

After a shamanic vision of the subtler levels of reality the 
semimyth-ical ancient Egyptian prophet Hermes Trismegistus employed 
a slightly different phrasing and said that one of the main keys to knowl- 
edge was the understanding that "the without is like the within of things; 
the small is like the large." 13 The medieval alchemists, for whom 
Hermes Trismegistus became a kind of patron saint, distilled the 
sentiment into the motto "As above, so below." In talking about the same 
macrocosm-equals-microcosm idea the Hindu Visvasara Tan-tra uses 
somewhat cruder terms and states simply, "What is here is elsewhere." 20 

The Oglala Sioux medicine man Black Elk put an even more nonlocal 
twist on the same concept. While standing on Harney Peak in the Black 
Hills he witnessed a "great vision" during which he "saw more than I can 
tell and I understood more than I saw; for I was seeing in a sacred 
manner the shapes of all things in the spirit, and the shape of all shapes 
as they must live together as one being." One of the most profound 
understandings he came away with after this encounter with the 
ineffable was that Harney Peak was the center of the world. However, 
this distinction was not limited to Harney Peak, for as Black Elk put it, 
"Anywhere is the center of the world." 21 Over twenty -five centuries 
earlier the Greek philosopher Empedocles brushed up against the same 
sacred otherness and wrote that "God is a circle whose center is 
everywhere, and its circumference nowhere. 1 '" - 

Not content with mere words, some ancient thinkers resorted to even 
more elaborate analogies in their attempt to communicate the 
holographic properties of reality. To this end the author of the Hindu 
Avatamsaka Sutra likened the universe to a legendary network of 

Return to the Dreamtime 


pearls said to hang over the palace of the god Indra and "so arranged that 
if you look at one [pearl], you see all the others reflect in it" As the 
author of the Sutra explained, "In the same way, each object in the world 
is not merely itself, but involves every other object and, in fact, is 
everything else." 23 

Fa-Tsang, the seventh-century founder of the Hua-yen school of 
Buddhist thought, employed a remarkably similar analogy when trying 
to communicate the ultimate interconnectedness and interpenetra-tion of 
all things. Fa-Tsang, who held that the whole cosmos was implicit in 
each of its parts (and who also believed that every point in the cosmos 
was its center), likened the universe to a multidimensional network of 
jewels, each one reflecting all others ad infinitum. 24 

When the empress Wu announced that she did not understand what 
Fa-Tsang meant by this image and asked him for further clarification, 
Fa-Tsang suspended a candle in the middle of a room full of mirrors. 
This, he told the empress Wu, represented the relationship of the One to 
the many. Then he took a polished crystal and placed it in the center of 
the room so that it reflected everything around it. This, he said, showed 
the relationship of the many to the One. However, like Bohm, who 
stresses that the universe is not simply a hologram but a holo-movement, 
Fa-Tsang stressed that his model was static and did not reflect the 
dynamism and constant movement of the cosmic interrelat-edness 
among all things in the universe. 26 

In short, long before the invention of the hologram, numerous thinkers 
had already glimpsed the nonlocal organization of the universe and had 
arrived at their own unique ways to express this insight. It is worth 
noting that these attempts, crude as they may seem to those of us who are 
more technologically sophisticated, may have been far more important 
than we realize. For instance, it appears that the seventeenth-century 
German mathematician and philosopher Leibniz was familiar with the 
Hua-yen school of Buddhist thought. Some have argued that this was 
why he proposed that the universe is constituted out of fundamental 
entities he called "monads," each of which contains a reflection of the 
whole universe. What is significant is that Leibniz also gave the world 
integral calculus, and it was integral calculus that enabled Dennis Gabor 
to invent the hologram. 



The Future of the Holographic Idea 

And so an ancient idea, an idea that seems to find at least some 
expression in virtually all of the world's philosophical and metaphysical 
traditions, comes full circle. But if these ancient understandings can lead 
to the invention of the hologram, and the invention of the hologram can 
lead to Bohm and Pribram's formulation of the holographic model, to 
what new advances and discoveries might the holographic model lead? 
Already there are more possibilities on the horizon. 


Drawing on Pribram's holographic model of the brain, Argentinian 
physiologist Hugo Zuccarelli recently developed a new recording 
tech-nique that allows one to create what amounts to holograms made 
out of sound instead of light. Zuccarelli bases his technique on the 
curious fact that the human ears actually emit sound. Realizing that these 
naturally occurring sounds were the audio equivalent of the "reference 
laser" used to recreate a holographic image, he used them as the basis for 
a revolutionary new recording technique that reproduces sounds that are 
even more realistic and three-dimensional than those produced through 
the stereo process. He calls this new kind of sound "holophonic sound. " 26 
After listening to one of Zuccarelli's holophonic recordings, a reporter 
for the Times of London wrote recently, "I stole a look at the reassuring 
numbers on my watch to make sure where I was. People 

approached from behind me where I knew there was only wall By 

the end of seven minutes I was getting the impression of figures, the 
embodiment of the voices on the tape. It is a multidimensional 'picture' 
created by sound." 27 

Because Zuccarelli's technique is based on the brain's own holo- 
graphic way of processing sound, it appears to be as successful at fooling 
the ear as light holograms are at fooling the eyes. As a result, listeners 
often move their feet when they hear a recording of someone walking in 
front of them, and move their heads when they hear what sounds like a 
match being lit too near to their face (some reportedly -even smelt the 
match). Remarkably, because a holophonic recording has nothing to do 
with conventional stereophonic sound, it maintains 

Return to the Dreamtime 


its eerie three-dimensionality even when one listens to it through only 
one side of a headphone. The holographic principles involved also 
appear to explain why people who are deaf in one ear can still locate the 
source of a sound without moving their heads. 

A number of major recording artists, including Paul McCartney, Peter 
Gabriel, and Vangelis, have approached Zuccarelli about his process, but 
because of patent considerations he has not yet disclosed the information 
necessary for a full understanding of his technique.* 


Chemist Ilya Prigogine recently noted that Bohm's idea of the impli- 
cate-explicate order may help explain certain anomalous phenomena in 
chemistry. Science has long believed that one of the most absolute rules 
in the universe is that things always tend toward a greater state of 
disorder. If you drop a stereo off of the Empire State Building, when it 
crashes into the sidewalk it doesn't become more ordered and turn into a 
VCR. It becomes more disordered and turns into a pile of splintered 

Prigogine has discovered that this is not true for all things in the 
universe. He points out that, when mixed together, some chemicals 
develop into a more ordered arrangement, not a more disordered one. He 
calls these spontaneously appearing ordered systems "dissipative 
structures" and won a Nobel Prize for unraveling their mysteries. But 
how can a new and more complex system just suddenly pop into exis- 
tence? Put another way, where do dissipative structures come from? 
Prigogine and others have suggested that, far from materializing out of 
nowhere, they are an indication of a deeper level of order in the universe, 
evidence of the implicate aspects of reality becoming explicate. 28 

If this is true, it could have profound implications and, among other 
things, lead to a deeper understanding of how new levels of complex- 
ity — such as attitudes and new patterns of behavior — pop into existence 
in the human consciousness and even how that most intriguing 
complexity of all, life itself, appeared on the earth several billion years 

"A sample audio cassette of holophonically recorded sound can be obtained for fifteen dollars 
from interface Press, Box 42211, Los Angeles, California 90042. 




The holographic brain model has also recently been extended into the 
world of computers. In the past, computer scientists thought that the best 
way to build a better computer was simply to build a bigger computer. 
But in the last half decade or so, researchers have developed a new 
strategy, and instead of building single monolithic machines, some have 
started connecting scores of little computers together in "neural 
networks" that more closely resemble the biological structure of the 
human brain. Recently, Marcus S. Cohen, a computer scientist at New 
Mexico State University, pointed out that processors that rely on 
interfering waves of light passing through "multiplexed holographic 
gratings" might provide an even better analog of the brain's neural 
structure. 29 Similarly, physicist Dana Z. Anderson of the University of 
Colorado has recently shown how holographic gratings could be used to 
build an "optical memory" that exhibits associative recall. 30 

As exciting as these developments are, they are still just further 
refinements of the mechanistic approach to understanding the universe, 
advances that take place only within the material framework of reality. 
But as we have seen, the holographic idea's most extraordinary assertion 
is that the materiality of the universe may be an illusion, and physical 
reality may be only a small part of a vast and sentient nonphysical 
cosmos. If this is true, what implications does it have for the future? How 
do we begin to go about truly penetrating the mysteries of these subtler 

The Need for a Basic Restructuring of Science 

Currently one of the best tools we have for exploring the unknown 
aspects of reality is science. And yet when it comes to explaining the 
psychic and spiritual dimensions of human existence, science in the 
main has repeatedly fallen short of the mark. Clearly, if science is to 
advance further in these areas, it needs to undergo a basic restructuring, 
but what specifically might such a restructuring entail? 

Obviously the first and most necessary step is to accept the existence 
of psychic and spiritual phenomena. Willis Harman, the president of the 
Institute of Noetic Sciences and a former senior social 

Return to the Dreamtime 


scientist at Stanford Research Institute International, feels this ac- 
ceptance is crucial not only to science, but to the survival of human 
civilization. Moreover, Harman, who has written extensively on the 
need for a basic restructuring of science, is astonished that this accept- 
ance has not yet taken place. "Why don't we assume that any class of 
experiences or phenomena that have been reported, through the ages and 
across cultures, has a face validity that cannot be denied?" he asks. 31 

As has been mentioned, at least part of the reason is the longstanding 
bias Western science has against such phenomena, but the issue is not 
quite so simple as this. Consider for example the past-life memories of 
people under hypnosis. Whether these are actual memories of previous 
lives or not has yet to be proved, but the fact remains, the human 
unconscious has a natural propensity for generating at least apparent 
memories of previous incarnations. In general, the orthodox psychiatric 
community ignores this fact Why? 

At first glance the answer would appear to be because most psychia- 
trists just don't believe in such things, but this is not necessarily the case. 
Florida psychiatrist Brian L. Weiss, a graduate of the Yale School of 
Medicine and currently chairman of psychiatry at Mount Sinai Medical 
Center in Miami, says that since the publication of his best-selling book 
Many Lives, Many Masters in 1988 — in which he discusses how he 
turned from being a skeptic to a believer in reincarnation after one of his 
patients started talking spontaneously about her past lives while under 
hypnosis — he has been deluged with letters and telephone calls from 
psychiatrists who say that they, too, are secret believers. "I think that is 
just the tip of the iceberg," says Weiss. "There are psychiatrists who 
write me they've been doing regression therapy for ten to twenty years, 
in the privacy of their office, and 'please don't tell anyone, but . ..' Many 
are receptive to it, but they won't admit it" M 

Similarly, in a recent conversation with Whitton when I asked him if 
he felt reincarnation would ever become an accepted scientific fact, he 
replied, "I think it already is. My experience with scientists is that if 
they've read the literature, they believe in reincarnation. The evidence is 
just so compelling that intellectual assent is virtually natural." 33 

Weiss's and Whitton's opinions seem borne out by a recent survey on 
psychic phenomena. After being assured that their replies would remain 
anonymous, 58 percent of the 228 psychiatrists who responded 



(many of them the heads of departments and the deans of medical 
schools) said that they believed "an understanding of psychic phenom- 
ena" was important to future graduates of psychiatry ! Forty -four percent 
admitted believing that psychic factors were important in the healing 
process. 34 

So it appears that fear of ridicule may be as much if not more of a 
stumbling block as disbelief in getting the scientific establishment to 
begin to treat psychic research with the seriousness it deserves. We need 
more trailblazers like Weiss and Whitton (and the myriad other 
courageous researchers whose work has been discussed in this book) to 
go public with their private beliefs and discoveries. In brief, we need the 
parapsycho logical equivalent of a Rosa Parks. 

Another feature that must be a part of the restructuring of science is a 
broadening of the definition of what constitutes scientific evidence. 
Psychic and spiritual phenomena have played a significant roie in human 
history and have helped shape some of the most fundamental aspects of 
our culture. But because they are not easy to rope io and scrutinize in a 
laboratory setting, science has tended to ignore them. Even worse, when 
they are studied, it is often the least important aspects of the phenomena 
that are isolated and catalogued. For instance, one of the few discoveries 
regarding OBFJs that is considered valid in a scientific sense is that the 
brain waves change when an OBEer exits the body. And yet, when one 
reads accounts like Monroe's, one realizes that if his experiences are real, 
they involve discoveries that could arguably have as much impact on 
human history as Columbus's discovery of the New World or the 
invention of the atomic bomb. Indeed, those who have watched a truly 
talented clairvoyant at work know immediately that they have witnessed 
something far more profound than is conveyed in the dry statistics of R. H. 
and Louisa Rhine. 

This is not to say that the Rhines' work is not important. But when vast 
numbers of people start reporting the same experiences, their anecdotal 
accounts should also be viewed as important evidence. They should not 
be dismissed merely because they cannot be documented as rigorously as 
other and often less significant features of the same phenomenon can be 
documented. As Stevenson states, "I believe it is better to learn what is 
probable about important matters than to be certain about trivial ones." 35 
It is worth noting that this rule of thumb is already applied to other 

Return to the Dreamtime 


more accepted natural phenomena. The idea that the universe began in a 
single, primordial explosion, or Big Bang, is accepted without question 
by most scientists. And this is odd because, although there are 
compelling reasons to believe that this is true, no one has ever proved 
that it is true. On the other hand, if a near-death psychologist were to 
state flatly that the realm of light NDEers travel to during their 
experiences is an actual other level of reality, the psychologist would be 
attacked for making a statement that cannot be proved. And this is odd, 
for there are equally compelling reasons to believe this is true. In other 
words, science already accepts what is probable about very important 
matters (/those matters fall into the category of "fashionable things to 
believe," but not if they fall into the category of "unfashionable things to 
believe." This double standard must be eliminated before science can 
begin to make significant inroads into the study of both psychic and 
spiritual phenomena. 

Most crucial of all, science must replace its enamorment with 
objec-tivity — the idea that the best way to study nature is to be detached, 
analytical, and dispassionately objective — with a more participatory 
approach. The importance of this shift has been stressed by numerous 
researchers, including Harman. We have also seen evidence of its 
necessity repeatedly throughout this book. In a universe in which the 
consciousness of a physicist affects the reality of a subatomic particle, 
the attitude of a doctor affects whether or not a placebo works, the mind 
of an experimenter affects the way a machine operates, and the imaginal 
can spill over into physical reality, we can no longer pretend that we are 
separate from that which we are studying. In a holographic and 
omnijective universe, a universe in which all things are part of a 
seamless continuum, strict objectivity ceases to be possible. 

This is especially true when studying psychic and spiritual phenomena 
and appears to be why some laboratories are able to achieve spectacular 
results when performing remote -vie wing experiments, and some fail 
miserably. Indeed, some researchers in the paranormal field have already 
shifted from a strictly objective approach to a more participatory 
approach. For example, Valerie Hunt discovered that her experimental 
results were affected by the presence of individuals who had been 
drinking alcohol and thus won't allow any such individuals in her lab 
while she is taking measurements. In this same vein, Russian 
parapsychologists Dubrov and Pushkin have found that they have more 
success duplicating the findings of other parapsychologists 



if they hypnotize all of the test subjects present. It appears that hypnosis 
eliminates the interference caused by the conscious thoughts and beliefs 
of the test subjects, and helps produce "cleaner" results. 3 * Although such 
practices may seem odd in the extreme to us today, they may become 
standard operating procedures as science unravels further secrets of the 
holographic universe. 

A shift from objectivity to participation will also most assuredly affect 
the role of the scientist As it becomes increasingly apparent that it is the 
experience of observing that is important, and not just the act of 
observation, it is logical to assume that scientists in turn will see 
themselves less and less as observers and more and more as experiences. 
As Harman states, "A willingness to be transformed is an essential 
characteristic of the participatory scientist." 37 

Again, there is evidence that a few such transformations are already 
taking place. For instance, instead of just observing what happened to 
the Conibo after they consumed the soul-vine ayakuasca, Harner 
imbibed the hallucinogen himself. It is obvious that not all 
anthropologists would be willing to take such a risk, hut it is also clear 
that by becoming a participant instead of just an observer, he was able to 
learn much more than he ever could have by just sitting on the sidelines 
and taking notes. 

Harner's success suggests that instead of just interviewing NDEers, 
OBEers, and other journey ers into the subtler realms, participatory 
scientists of the future may devise methods of traveling there themselves. 
Already lucid-dream researchers are exploring and reporting back on 
their own lucid-dream experiences. Others may develop different and 
even more novel techniques for exploring the inner dimensions. For 
instance, although not a scientist in the strictest definition of the term, 
Monroe has developed recordings of special rhythmic sounds that he 
feels facilitate out-of-body experiences. He has also founded a research 
center called the Monroe Institute of Applied Sciences in the Blue Ridge 
Mountains and claims to have trained hundreds of individuals to make 
the same out-of-body journeys he has made. Are such developments 
harbingers of the future, fore-shadowings of a time when not only 
astronauts but "psychonauts" become the heroes we watch on the 
evening news? 

Return to the Dreamtime 


An Evolutionary Thrust toward 
Higher Consciousness 

Science may not be the only force that offers us passage to the land of 
nonwhere. In his book Heading toward Omega Ring points out that there 
is compelling evidence that NDEs are on the increase. As we have seen, 
in tribal cultures individuals who have NDEs are often so transformed 
that they become shamans. Modern NDEers become spiritually 
transformed as well, mutating from their pre-NDE personalities into 
more loving, compassionate, and even more psychic individuals. From 
this Ring concludes that perhaps what we are witnessing is "the 
skamanizing of modern humanity. ' 13S But if this is so, why are NDEs 
increasing? Ring believes that the answer is as simple as it is profound; 
what we are witnessing is "an evolutionary thrust toward higher 
consciousness for all humanity. " 

And NDEs may not be the only transformative phenomenon bubbling 
up from the collective human psyche. Grosso believes that the increase 
in Marian visions during the last century has evolutionary implications 
as well. Similarly, numerous researchers, including Raschke and Vallee, 
feel that the explosion of UFO sightings in the last several decades has 
evolutionary significance. Several investigators, including Ring, have 
pointed out that UFO encounters actually resemble shamanic initiations 
and may be further evidence of the shamanizing of modern humanity, 
Strieber agrees. "I think it's rather obvious that, whether [the UFO 
phenomenon is being] done by somebody or [is happening] naturally, 
what we're dealing with is an exponential leap from one species to 
another. I would suspect that what we're looking at is the process of 
evolution in action." 39 

If such speculations are true, what is the purpose of this evolutionary 
transformation? There appears to be two answers. Numerous ancient 
traditions speak of a time when the hologram of physical reality was 
much more plastic than it is now, much more like the amorphous and 
fluid reality of the afterlife dimension. For example, the Australian 
aborigines say that there was a time when the entire world was 
dreamtime. Edgar Cayce echoed this sentiment and asserted that the 
earth was "at first merely in the nature of thought-forms or visualization 
made by pushing themselves out of themselves in whatever manner 
desired. .. . Then came materiality as sueh into the earth, through Spirit 
pushing itself into matter." 40 

The aborigines assert that the day will come when the earth returns 



to the dreamttme. In the spirit of pure speculation, one might wonder if, 
as we learn to manipulate the hologram of reality more and more, we will 
see the fulfillment of this prophecy. As we become more adept at 
tinkering with what Jahn and Dunne call the interface between 
consciousness and its environment, is it possible for us to experience a 
reality that is once again malleable? If this is true, we will need to learn 
much more than we presently know to manipulate such a plastic 
environment safely, and perhaps that is one purpose of the evolutionary 
processes that seem to be unfolding in our midst 

Many ancient traditions also assert that humanity did not originate on 
the earth, and that our true home is with God, or at least in a nonphysical 
and more paradisiacal realm of pure spirit. For instance, there is a Hindu 
myth that human consciousness began as a ripple that decided to leave 
the ocean of "consciousness as such, timeless, spaceless, infinite and 
eternal." 41 Awakening to itself, it forgot that it was a part of this infinite 
ocean, and felt isolated and separated. Loye has argued that Adam and 
Eve's expulsion from the Garden of Eden may also be a version of this 
myth, an ancient memory of how human consciousness, somewhere in 
its unfathomable past, left its home in the implicate and forgot that it was 
a part of the cosmic wholeness of all things. 42 In this view the earth is a 
kind of playground "in which one is free to experience all the pleasures 
of the flesh provided one realizes that one is a holographic projection of 
a . . . higher-order spatial dimension." 43 

If this is true, the evolutionary fires that are beginning to flicker and 
dance through our collective psyche may be our wake-up call, the 
trumpet note informing us that our true home is elsewhere and we can 
return there if we wish. Strieber, for one, believes this is precisely why 
UFOs are here: "I think that they are probably midwifing our birth into 
the nonphysical world — which is their origin. My impression is that the 
physical world is only a small instant in a much larger context and that 
reality is primarily unfolding in a non-physical way. I don't think that 
physical reality is the original source of being. I think that being, as 
consciousness, probably predates the physical." 44 

Writer Terence McKenna, another longtime supporter of the holo- 
graphic model, agrees: 

What this seems to be about is that from the time of the awareness of 
the existence of the soul until the resolution of the apocalyptic potential, 
there are roughly fifty thousand years. We are now, there can be no 

Return to the Dreamtime 


doubt, in the final historical seconds of that crisis — a crisis which involves 
the end of history, our departure from the planet, [and] the triumph over 
death. We are, in fact, closing distance with the most profound event a 
planetary ecology can encounter — the freeing of life from the dark 
chrysalis of matter. 4 " 

Of course these are only speculations. But whether we are on the very 
brink of a transition, as Strieber and McKenna suggest, or whether that 
watershed is still some ways off in the future, it is apparent that we are 
following some track of spiritual evolution. Given the holographic nature 
of the universe, it is also apparent that at least something like the above 
two possibilities awaits us somewhere and somewhen. 

And lest we be tempted to assume that freedom from the physical is 
the end of human evolution, there is evidence that the more plastic and 
imaginal realm of the hereafter is also a mere stepping stone. For 
example, Swedenborg said that beyond the heaven he visited was 
another heaven, one so brilliant and formless to his perceptions that it 
appeared only as "a streaming of light. " 46 NDEers have also occasionally 
described these even more unfathomably tenuous realms. "There are 
many higher planes, and to get back to God, to reach the plane where His 
spirit resides, you have to drop your garment each time until your spirit is 
truly free," states one of Whitton's subjects. "The learning process never 
stops. . . . Sometimes we are allowed glimpses of the higher 
planes — each one is lighter and brighter than the one before." 47 

It may be frightening to some that reality seems to become increas- 
ingly frequency -like as one penetrates deeper into the implicate. And this 
is understandable. It is obvious that we are still like children who need 
the security of a coloring book, not yet ready to draw free -form and 
without lines to guide our clumsy hands. To be plunged into 
Swedenborg's realm of streaming light would be tantamount to plunging 
us into a completely fluid LSD hallucination. And we are not yet mature 
enough or in enough control of our emotions, attitudes, and beliefs to 
deal with the monsters our psyches would create for ourselves there. 

But perhaps that is why we are learning how to deal with small doses 
of the omnijective here, in the form of the relatively limited 
confrontations with the imaginal that UFOs and other similar experi- 
ences provide. 



And perhaps that is why the beings of light tell us again and again that 
the purpose of life is to learn. 

We are indeed on a shaman's journey, mere children struggling to 
become technicians of the sacred. We are learning how to deal with the 
plasticity that is part and parcel of a universe in which mind and reality 
are a continuum, and in this journey one lesson stands out above all 
others. As long as the formlessness and breathtaking freedom of the 
beyond remain frightening to us, we will continue to dream a hologram 
for ourselves that is comfortably solid and well defined. 

But we must always heed Bohm's warning that the conceptual pi- 
geonholes we use to parse out the universe are of our own making. They 
do not exist "out there," for "out there" is only the indivisible totality. 
Brahman. And when we outgrow any given set of conceptual 
pigeonholes we must always be prepared to move on, to advance from 
soul-state to soul A tate, as Sri Aurobindo put it, and from illumination to 
illumination. For our purpose appears to be as simple as it is endless. 

We are, as the aborigines say, just learning how to survive in infinity. 



1 . Irvin L. Child, "Psychology and Anomalous Observations," American 
Psychologist 40, no. 11 (November 1985), pp. 1219-30. 


1. Wilder Penfield, The Mystery of the Mind: A Critical Study of Con- 
sciousness and the Human Brain (Princeton, NX: Princeton Univer- 
sity Press, 1975). 

2 Karl Lashley, "In Search of the Engram," in Physiological Mechanisms 
in Animal Behavior (New York: Academic Press, 1950), pp. 454-82. 

3. Karl Pribram, "The Neurophysiology of Remembering," Scientific. 
American 220 (January 1969), p. 75. 

4 Karl Pribram, Languages of the Brain (Monterey, Calif.: Wadsworth 
Publishing, 1977), p. 123. 

5. Daniel Goleman, "Holographic Memory: Karl Pribram Interviewed 
by Daniel Goleman," Psychology Today 12, no. 9 (February 1979), p. 72. 

6. J. Collier, C. B. Burckhardt, and L. H. Lin, Optical Holography {New 
York: Academic Press, 1971). 

7. Pieter van Heerden, "Models for the Brain," Nature 227 (July 25,1970), 
pp. 410-11. 

8. Paul Pietsch, Shufflebrain: The Quest for the Hologramic Mind (Boston: 
Houghton Mifflin, 1981), p. 78. 

9 Daniel A. Pollen and Michael C. Tractenberg, "Alpha Rhythm and Eye 

Movements in Eidetic Imagery," Nature 237 (May 12, 1972), p. 109, 
10. Pribram, Languages, p. 169. 




11. Paul Pietsch, "Shuffle brain," Harper's Magazine 244 (May 1972), p. 66. 

12. Kareo K. DeValois, Russell L. DeValois, and W. W. Yund, "Responses of 
Striate Cortex Cells to Grating and Checkerboard Patterns," Journal of 
Physiology, vol. 291 (1979), pp. 483-505. 

13. Goleman, Psychology Today, p. 71, 

14. Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine (Boston: New Science Library, 
1982), pp. 108-9. 

15. Richard Restak, "Brain Power A New Theory," Science Digest (March 
1981), p. 19. 

16. Richard Restak, The Brain (New York: Warner Books, 1979), p. 253. 


1. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat, "The Development of David Bohm's Ideas 

from the Plasma to the Implicate Order," in Quantum Implications, ed. 

Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London; Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), 

p. 1. 
2 Nick Herbert, "How Large is Starlight? A Brief Look at Quantum Reality," 

Revision 10, no. 1 (Summer 1987), pp. 31-35. 

3. Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky, and Nathan Rosen, "Can 
Quantum-Mechanical Description of Physical Reality Be Considered 
Complete?" Physical Review 47 (1935), p. 777. 

4. Hiley and Peat, Quantum, p. 3. 

5. John P. Briggs and F. David Peat, Looking Glass Universe (New York: 
Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 96. 

6. David Bohm, "Hidden Variables and the Implicate Order," in Quantum 
Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge & 
Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 38. 

7. "Nonioeality in Physics and Psychology: An Interview with John Stewart 
Bell," Psychological Perspectives (Fall-Winter 1988), p. 306. 

8. Robert Temple, "An Interview with David Bohm," New Scientist (No- 
vember II, 1982), p. 362. 

9. Bohm, Quantum, p. 40. 

10. David Bohm, Wholeness and the Implicate Order (London: Routledge & 
Kegan Paul, 1980), p. 205. 

11. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

12. Bohm, Wholeness, p. 192. 

13. Paul Davies, Superforce (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 48. 
14 Lee Smolin, "What is Quantum Mechanics Really About?" New Scien 
tist (October 24, 1985), p. 43. 

15. Private communication with author, October 14, 1988. 


16. Saybrook Publishing Company, The Reach of the Mind: Nobel Prize 
Conversations (Dallas, Texas: Saybrook Publishing Co., 1985), p. 91. 

17. Judith Hooper, "An Interview with Karl Pribram," Omni (October 1982), p. 

18. Private communication with author, February 8, 1989. 

19. Renee Weber, "The Enfolding-Unfolding Universe: A Conversation with 
David Bohm," in The Holographic Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder, 
Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), pp. 83-84. 

20. Ibid., p. 73. 


1. Renee Weber, "The Enfolding-Unfolding Universe: A Conversation with 
David Bohm," in The Holographic Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder, 
Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 72. 

2. Robert M. Anderson, Jr., "A Holographic Model of Transpersonal Con- 
sciousness," Journal of Transpersonal Psychology 9, no. 2 (1977), p. 126. 

3. Jon Tolaas and Montague Ullman, "Extrasensory Communication and 
Dreams," in Handbook of Dreams, ed. Benjamin B. Wolman (New York: 
VanNostrand Reinhold, 1979), pp. 178-79. 

4. Private communication with author, October 31, 1988. 

5. Montague Ullman, "Wholeness and Dreaming," in Quantum Implications, 
ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (New York: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 
1987), p. 393, 

6. I. Matte-Bianco, "A Study of Schizophrenic Thinking: Its Expression in 
Terms of Symbolic Logic and Its Representation in Terms of Multidimen- 
sional Space," International Journal of Psychiatry 1, no. 1 (January 1965), 
p. 93. 

7. Montague Ullman, "Psi and Psychopathology," paper delivered at the 
American Society for Psychical Research conference on Psychic Factors in 
Psychotherapy, November 8, 1986. 

8. See Stephen LaBerge, Lucid Dreaming (Los Angeles: Jeremy P-Tarcher, 

9. Fred Alan Wolf, Star Wave (New York: Macmillan, 1984), p. 238. 

10. Jayne Gackenbach, "Interview with Physicist Fred Alan Wolf on the 
Physics of Lucid Dreaming," Lucidity Letter 6, no. 1 (June 1987), p. 52. 

11. Fred Alan Wolf, "The Physics of Dream Consciousness: Is the Lucid 
Dream a Parallel Universe?" Second Lucid Dreaming Symposium 
Proceedings/Lucidity Letter 6, no. 2 (December 1987), p. 133. 

12. Stanislav Grof, Realms of the Human Unconscious (New York: E. P. 
Dutton, 1976), p. 20. 



13. Ibid., p. 236. 

14. Ibid., pp. 159-60. 

15. Stanislav Grof, The Adventure of Self-Discovery (Albany, N.Y.: State 
University of New York Press, 1988), pp. 108-9. 

16. Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, N.Y.: State University of New 
York Press, 1985), p. 31, 

17. rbid., p. 78. 

18. Ibid., p. 89. 

19. Edgar A. Levenson, "A Holographic Model of Psychoanalytic Change," 
Contemporary Psychoanalysis 12, no. 1 (1975), p. 13. 

20. Ibid., p. 19. 

21. David Shainberg, "Vortices of Thought in the Implicate Order," in 
Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (New York: 
Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 402. 

22. Ibid., p. 411. 

23. Frank Putnam, Diagnosis and Treatment of Multiple Personality Disorder 
(New York: Guilford, 1988), p. 68. 

24. "Science and Synchronicity: A Conversation with C. A. Meier," Psycho- 
logical Perspectives 19, no. 2 (Fall-Winter 1988), p. 324. 

25. Paul Da vies, The Cosmic Blueprint (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1988), 
p. 162 

26. F. David Peat, Synckronicity: The Bridge between Mind and Matter (New 
York: Bantam Books, 1987), p. 235. 

27. Ibid., p. 239. 


1. Stephanie Matthews-Simon ton, 0. Carl Simonton, and James L. Creigh-ton, 
Getting Well Again (New York: Bantam Books, 1980), pp. 6-12. 

2. Jeanne Achterberg, "Mind and Medicine: The Role of Imagery in Healing," 
ASPR Newsletter 14, no. 3 (June 1988), p. 20. 

3. Jeanne Achterberg, Imagery in Healing (Boston, Mass.: New Science 
Library, 1985), p. 134. 

4. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

5. Achterberg, ASPR Newsletter, p. 20. 

6. Achterberg, Imagery, pp. 78-79. 

7. Jeanne Achterberg, Ira Collerain, and Pat Craig, "A Possible Relationship 
between Cancer, Mental Retardation, and Mental Disorders," Journal of 
Social Science and Medicine 12 {May 1978), pp. 135-39. 

8. Bernie S. Siegel, Love, Medicine, and Miracles (New York: Harper & Row, 
1986), p. 32. 



9. Achterberg, Imagery, pp. 182-87. 

10. Bernie S. Siegel, Love, p. 29. 

11. Charles A. Garfield, Peak Performance: Mental Training Techniques of the 
World's Greatest Athletes (New York: Warner Books. 1984), p. 16. 

12. Ibid., p. 62. 

13. Mary Orser and Richard Zarro, Changing Your Destiny (New York: Harper 
& Row, 1989), p. 60. 

14. Barbara Brown, Supermind' The Ultimate Energy (New York: Harper & 
Row, 1980), p. 274: as quoted in Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine 
(Boston, Mass.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 112. 

15. Brown, Supermind, p. 275: as quoted in Dossey, Space, pp. 112-13. 

16. Larry Dossey, Space, Time, and Medicine (Boston, Mass.: New Science 
Library, 1982), p. 112. 

17. Private communication with author, February 8, 1989. 

18. Brendan ORegan, "Healing, Remission, and Miracle Cures," Institute of 
Noetic Sciences Special Report (May 1987), p. 3. 

19. Lewis Thomas, The Medusa and the Snail (New York: Bantam Books, 
1980), p. 63. 

20. Thomas J. Hurley III, "Placebo Effects: Unmapped Territory of Mind/ 
Body Interactions," Investigations 2, no. 1 (1985), p. 9. 

21. Ibid. 

22. Steven Locke and Douglas Colligan, The Healer Within (New York: New 
American Library, 1986), p. 224. 

23. Ibid., p. 227. 

24. Bruno Klopfer, "Psychological Variables in Human Cancer," Journal of 
Prospective Techniques 31 (1957), pp. 331-40. 

25. ORegan, Special Report, p. 4. 

26. G Timothy Johnson and Stephen E. Goldfinger, The Harvard Medical 
School Health Letter Book (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University 
Press, 1981), p. 416. 

27. Herbert Benson and David P. McCallie, Jr., "Angina Pectoris and the 
Placebo Effect," New England Journal of Medicine 300, no. 25 (1979), pp. 

28. Johnson and Goldfinger, Health Letter Book, p. 418. 

29. Hurley, Investigations, p. 10. 

30. Richard Alpert, Be Here Now (San Cristobal, N.M.: Lama Foundation, 

31. Lyall Watson, Beyond Supernature (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), p. 

32. Ira L. Mintz, "A Note on the Addictive Personality," American Journal of 
Psychiatry 134, no. 3 (1977), p. 327. 



33Alfred Stelter, Psi-Healing (New York: Bantam Books, 1976), p. 8. 
34. Thomas J. Hurley HI, "Placebo Learning: The Placebo Effect as a Condi- 
tioned Response," Investigations 2, no. 1 (1985), p. 23. 
35.0'Regan, Special Report, p. 3. 

36. As quoted in Thomas J. Hurley III, "Varieties of Placebo Experience: Can 
One Definition Encompass Them All?" Investigations 2 no 1 (1985), p. 13. 

37. Daniel Seligman, "Great Moments in Medical Research," Fortune 117 
no. 5 (February 29, 1988), p. 25. 

38. Daniel Goleman, "Probing the Enigma of Multiple Personality " New York 
Times (June 25, 1988), p. CI. 

39.Private communication with author, January 11, 1990. 

40. Richard Restak, "People with Multiple Minds," Science Digest 92 no 
6 (June 1984), p. 76. 

41. Daniel Goleman, "New Focus on Multiple Personality " New York 
Times (May 2\,\9%5), p. CI. 

42. Truddi Chase, When Rabbit Howls (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1987), p. 

43. Thomas J. Hurley III, "Inner Faces of Multiplicity," Investigations 1 
no. 3/4 (1985), p. 4. 

44. Thomas J, Hurley III, "Multiplicity & the Mind-Body Problem: New 
Windows to Natural Plasticity," Investigations 1, no. 3/4 (1985), p. 19. 

45. Bronislaw Malinowsld, "Baloma: The Spirits of the Dead in the Tro-bnand 
Islands," Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britam and 
Ireland 46 (1916), pp. 353-430. 

46. Watson, Beyond Supernature, pp. 58-60. 

47. Joseph Chilton Pearce, The Crack in the Cosmic Egg (New York- Pocket 
Books, 1974), p. 86. 

48. Pamela Weintraub, "Preschool?" Omni 11, no. 11 (August 1989), p. 38. 

49. Kathy A. Fackelmann, "Hostility Boosts Risk of Heart Trouble" Science 
News 135, no. 4 (January 28, 1989), p. 60. 

50. Steven Locke, in Longevity (November 1988), as quoted in "Your Mind's 
Healing Powers," Reader's Digest (September 1989), p. 5. 

51. Bruce Bower, "Emotion-Immunity Link in HIV Infection," Science News 
134, no. 8 (August 20, 1988), p. 116. 

52. Donald Robinson, "Your Attitude Can Make You Well," Reader's Diaest 
(April 1987), p. 75. 

53. Daniel Goleman in the New York Times (April 20, 1989), as quoted in 

Your Mind's Healing Powers," Reader's Digest (September 1989), p. 6. 

54. Robinson, Reader's Digest, p. 75. 

55. Signe Hammer, "The Mind as Healer," Science Digest 92, no 4 (April 1984), 
p. 100. 


56. John Raymond, "Jack Schwarz: The Mind Over Body Man," New Realities 
11, no. 1 (April 1978), pp. 72-76; see also, "Jack Schwarz: Probing ... but 
No Needles Anymore," Brain/Mind Bulletin 4, no. 2 (December 4, 1978), p. 

57. Stelter, Psi-Healing, pp. 121-24. 

58. Donna and Gilbert Grosvenor, "Ceylon," National Geographic 129, no. 4 
(April 1966). 

59. D. D. Kosambi, "Living Prehistory in India," Scientific American216, no. 2 
(February 1967), p. 104. 

60. A. A. Mason, "A Case of Congenital lehthyosiform," British Medical 
Journal 2 (1952), pp. 422-23. 

61. ORegan, Special Report, p. 9. 

62. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), p. 74. 

63. Herbert Thurston, The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism (Chicago: Henry 
Regnery Company, 1952), pp. 120-29. 

64. Thomas of Celano, Vita Prima (1229), as quoted by Thurston, Physical 
Phenomena, pp. 45-46. 

65. Alexander P. Dubrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and 
Contemporary Science, trans. Aleksandr Petrovieh (New York: Plenum, 
1982), p. 50. 

66. Thurston, Physical Phenomena, p. 68, 

67. Ibid. 

68. Charles Fort, The Complete Books of Charles Fort (New York: Dover, 
1974), p. 1022. 

69. Ibid., p. 964. 

70. Private communication with author, November 3, 1988. 

71. Candace Pert with Harris Dienstfrey, "The Neuropeptide Network," in 
Neuroimrnunomodulation: Interventions in Aging and Cancer, ed. Walter 
Pierpaoli and Novera Herbert Spector (New York: New York Academy of 
Sciences, 1988), pp. 189-94. 

72. Terrence D. Oleson, Richard J, Kroening, and David E. Bresler, "An 
Experimental Evaluation of Auricular Diagnosis: The Somatotopic Map- 
ping of Musculoskeletal Pain at Ear Acupuncture Points," Pain 8 (1980), pp. 

73. Private communication with author, September 24, 1988. 

74. Terrence D. Oleson and Richard J. Kroening t "Rapid Narcotic Detoxifi- 
cation in Chronic Pain Patients Treated with Auricular Electroacupuncture 
and Naloxone," International Journal of the Addictions 20, no. 9 (1985), pp. 

75. Richard Levitoc, "The Holographic Body," East West 18, no. 8 (August 
1988), p. 42. 

76. Ibid., p. 45. 

77. Ibid., pp. 36-47. 



78. "Fingerprints, a Cine to Senility," Science Digest 91, no. 1 1 (November 
1983), p. 91, 

79. Michael Meyer, "The Way the Whoris Turn," Newsweek (February 13 
1989), p. 73. 


1. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), p. 79. 

2. Ibid., p. 58; see also, Herbert Thurston, The Physical Phenomena of 
Mysticism (London: Bums Oates, 1952); and A. P. Schimberg, The Story 
ofTherese Neumann (Milwaukee, Wis.: Bruce Publishing Co., 1947). 

3. David J. Bohm, "A New Theory of the Relationship of Mind and Matter," 
Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 80, no. 2 (April 
1986), p. 128. 

4. Ibid., p. 132. 

5. Robert G. Jahn and Brenda J. Dunne, Margins of Reality: The Role of 
Consciousness in the Physical World (New York; Harcourt Brace 
Jovanovich, 1987), pp. 91-123. 

6. Ibid., p. 144. 

7. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988. 

8. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, p. 142. 

9. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988. 

10. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988. 

11. Steve Fishman, "Questions for the Cosmos," New York Times Magazine 
(November 26, 1989), p. 55. 

12. Private communication with author, November 25, 1988. 

13. Rex Gardner, "Miracles of Healing in Anglo-Celtic Northumbria as Re- 
corded by the Venerable Bede and His Contemporaries: A Reappraisal in 
the Light of Twentieth-Century Experience," British Medical Journal 287 
(December 1983), p. 1931. 

14. Max Freedom Long, The Secret Science behind Miracles (New York: 
Robert Collier Publications, 1948), pp. 191-92. 

15. Louis-Basile Carre de Montgeron, La Verite des Miracles (Paris: 1737), vol. 
i, p. 380, as quoted in H. P. Blavatsky, his Unveiled, vol. i (New York: J. W. 
Bouton, 1877), p. 374. 

16. Ibid., p. 374. 

17. B. Robert Kreiser, Miracles, Convulsions, and Ecclesiastical Politics in 
Early Eighteenth-Century Paris (Princeton, N. J.: Princeton University 
Press, 1978), pp. 260-61. 

18. Charles Mackey, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of 
Crowds (London: 1841), p. 318. 

19. Kreiser, Miracles, p. 174. 



20. Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, N.Y.: State University of New 
York Press, 1985), p. 91. 

21. Long, Secret Science, pp. 31-39. 

22. Frank Podmore, Mediums of the Nineteenth Century, vol. 2 (New Hyde 
Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1963), p. 264. 

23. VracentH. G A ddis, Mysterious Fires and Lights (New York; Dell, 1967), 
pp. 114-15. 

24. Blavatsky, Isis, p. 370. 

25. Podmore, Mediums, p. 264. 

26. Will and Ariel Durant, The Age of Louis XIV, vol. XIII (New York: Simon 
& Schuster, 1963), p. 73. 

27. Franz Werfel, The Song of Bernadette (Garden City, NY.: Sun Dial Press, 
1944), pp. 326-27. 

28. Gaddis, Mysterious Fires, pp. 106-7. 

29. Ibid., p. 106. 

30. Berthold Schwarz, "Ordeals by Serpents, Fire, and Strychnine," Psychiatric 
Quarterly 34 (1960), pp. 405-29. 

31. Private communication with author, July 17, 1989. 

32. Karl H. Pribram, "The Implicate Brain," in Quantum Implications, ed. Basil 
J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 

33. Private communication with author, February 8,1989; see also, Karl H. 
Pribram, "The Cognitive Revolution and Mind/Brain Issues," American 
Psychologist 41, no. 5 (May 1986), pp. 507-19. 

34. Private communication with author, November 25, 1988. 

35. Gordon G. Globus, "Three Holonomic Approaches to the Brain," in 
Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J. Hiley and F. David Peat (London: 
Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), pp. 372-85; see also, Judith Hooper and 
Dick Teresi, The Three-Pound Universe (New York Dell, 1986), pp. 

36. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988. 

37. Malcolm W. Browne, "Quantum Theory: Disturbing Questions Remain 
Unresolved," New York Times (February U, 1986), p. C3. 

38. Ibid. 

39. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, pp. 319-20; see also, Dietrick E. Thomson, 
"Anomalons Get More and More Anomalous," Science News 125 (Febru- 
ary 25, 1984). 

40. Christine Sutton, "The Secret Life of the Neutrino," New Scientist 117, no. 
1595 (January 14,1988), pp. 53-57; see also, "Soviet Neutrinos Have 
Mass," New Scientist 105, no. 1446 (March 7,1985), p. 23; and Dietrick E. 
Thomsen, "Ups and Downs of Neutrino Oscillation," Science News 117, no. 
24 (June 14, 1980), pp. 377-83. 



41. S. Edmunds, Hypnotism and the Supernormal (Londonr Aquarian Press, 
1967), as quoted in Supernature, Lyall Watson (New York: Bantam Books, 
1973), p. 236. 

42. Leonid L Vasiliev, Experiments in Distant Influence (New York: E. P, 
Button, 1976). 

43. See Russell Targ and Harold Puthoff, Mind-Reach (New York: Dela-corte 
Press, 1977). 

44. Fishman, New York Times Magazine, p. 55; see also, Jahn and Dunne, 
Margins, p. 187. 

45. Charles Tart, "Physiological Correlates of Psi Cognition," International 
Journal of Neuropsychiatry 5, no. 4 (1962). 

46. Targ and Puthoff, Mind-Reach, pp. 130-33. 

47. E. Douglas Dean, "Plethysmograph Recordings of ESP Responses," 
International Journal of Neuropsychiatry 2 (September 1966). 

48. Charles T. Tart, "Psychedelic Experiences Associated with a Novel Hyp- 
notic Procedure, Mutual Hypnosis," in Altered States of Consciousness, 
Charles T. Tart (New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1969), pp. 291-308. 

49. Ibid. 

50. John P, Brigga and F. David Peat, Looking Glass Universe (New York: 
Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 87. 

51. Targ and Puthoff, Mind-Reach, pp. 130-33. 

52. Russell Targ, et al.. Research in Parapsychology (Metuchen, NT.: 
Scarecrow, 1980). 

53. Bohtn, Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, p. 132. 

54. Jahn and Dunne, Margins, pp. 257-59. 

55. Gardner, British Medical Journal, p. 1930. 

56. Lyall Watson, Beyond Supernature (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), pp. 

57. A, R. G. Owen, Can We Explain the Poltergeist (New York: Garrett 
Publications, 1964). 

58. Erlendur Haraldsson, Modern Miracles: An Investigative Report on 
Psychic Phenomena Associated with Sathya Sai Baba (New York: Fawcett 
Columbine Books, 1987), pp. 26-27. 

59. Ibid., pp. 35-36. 

60. Ibid., p. 290. 

61. Paramahansa Yogananda, Autobiography of a Yogi (Los Angeles: 
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1973), p. 134. 

62. Rogo, Miracles, p. 173. 

63. Lyall Watson, Gifts of Unknown Things (New York: Simon & Schuster, 
1976), pp. 203-4. 



64. Private communication with author, February 9, 1989. 

65. Private communication with author, October 17, 1988. 

66. Private communication with author, December 16, 1988. 

67. Judith Hooper and Dick Teresi, The Three-Pound Universe (New York: 
Dell, 1986), p. 300. 

68. Carlos Castaneda, Tales of Power (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1974), p. 

69. Marilyn Ferguson, "Karl Pribram's Changing Reality," in The Holographic 
Paradigm, ed. Ken Wilber (Boulder, Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 

70. Erlendur Haraldsson and Loftur R. Gissurarson, The Icelandic Physical 
Medium: Indridi Indridason (London: Society for Psychical Research, 


1. Karl Pribram, "The Neurophysiology of Remembering," Scientific 
American 220 (January 1969), pp. 76-78. 

2. Judith Hooper, "Interview: Karl Pribram," Omni 5, no. 1 (October 1982), p. 

3. Wil van Beek, Hazrat Inayat Khan (New York: Vantage Press, 1983), p. 

4. Barbara Ann Brennan, Hands of Light (New York: Bantam Books, 1987), 
pp. 3-4. 

5. Ibid., p. 4. 

6. Ibid., cover quote. 

7. Ibid., cover quote. 

8. Ibid., p. 26. 

9. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988. 

10. Shall ca Karagulla, Breakthrough to Creativity (Marina Del Rey, Calif: 
DeVorss, 1967), p. 61. 

11. Ibid., pp. 78-79. 

12. W. Brugh Joy, Joy s Way (Los Angeles: J. P. Tarcher, 1979), pp. 155-56. 

13. Ibid., p. 48. 

14. Michael Criehton, Travels (New York: Knopf, 1988), p. 262. 

15. Ronald S. Miller, "Bridging the Gap: An Interview with Valerie Hunt," 
Science of Mind '(October 1983), p. 12. 

16. Private communication with author, February 7, 1990. 

17. Ibid. 

18. Ibid. 

19. Ibid. 



20. Valerie V. Hunt, "Infinite Mind," Magical Blend, no. 25 (January 1990), p. 

21. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

22. Robert Temple, "David Bohm," New Scientist (November 11, 1982), p. 

23. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988. 

24. Private communication with author, October 18, 1988. 

25. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988. 

26. Ibid. 

27. Ibid. 

28. George F. Dole, A View from Within (New York: Swedenborg Foundation, 
1985), p. 26. 

29. George F. Dole, "An Image of God in a Mirror," in Emanuel Sweden-borg: 
A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen (New York: Swedenborg 
Foundation, 1988), p. 370. 

30. Brennau, Hands, p. 20. 

31. Private communication with author, September 13, 1988. 

32. Karagulla, Breakthrough, p. 39. 

33. Ibid., p. 132. 

34. D. Scott Rogo, "Shamanism, ESP, and the Paranormal," in Shamanism, ed. 
Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), 
p. 135. 

35. Michael Hamer and Gary Doore, "The Ancient Wisdom in Shamanic 
Cultures," in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton, III.: Theo- 
sophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 10. 

36. Michael Hamer, The Way of the Shaman (New York: Harper & Row, 1980), 
p. 17. 

37. Richard Gerber, Vibrational Medicine (Santa Fe, N.M.: Bear & Co., 1988), 
p. 115. 

38. Ibid., p. 154. 

39. William A. Tiller, "Consciousness, Radiation, and the Developing Sensory 
System," as quoted in The Psychic Frontiers of Medicine, ed. Bill Schul 
(New York: Ballantine Books, 1977), p. 95. 

40. Ibid., p. 94. 

41. Hiroshi Motoyama, Theories of the Ckakras (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical 
Publishing House, 1981), p. 239. 

42. Richard M. Restak, "Is Free Will a Fraud?" Science Digest (October 1983), 
p. 52. 

43. Ibid. 

44. Private communication with author, February 7, 1990. 

45. Private communication with author, November 13, 1988. 



1. See Stephan A, Schwartz, The Secret Vaults of Time (New York: Gros-set 
& Dunlap, 1978); Stanislaw Poniatowski, "Parapsychological Probing of 
Prehistoric Cultures," in Psychic Archaeology, ed. J. Goodman (New York: 
G. P. Putnam & Sons, 1977); and Andrzey Borzmowski, "Experiments with 
Ossowiecki," International Journal of Parapsychology 7, no. 3 (1965), pp. 

2. J. Norman Emerson, "Intuitive Archaeology," Midden 5, no. 8 (1973). 

3. J. Norman Emerson, "Intuitive Archaeology: A Psychic Approach," New 
Horizon 1, no. 3 (1974), p. 14. 

4. Jack Harrison Pollack, Croiset the Clairvoyant (New York: Doubteday, 

5. Lawrence LeShan, The Medium, the Mystic, and the Physicist (New York: 
Ballantine Books, 1 974), pp. 30-3 1 . 

6. Stephan A. Schwartz, The Secret Vaults of Time (New York: Grosset & 
Dunlap, 1978), pp. 226-37; see also Clarence W. Weiant, "Parapsychology 
and Anthropology," Manas 13, no. 15 (1960). 

7. Schwartz, op. cit, pp. x and 314. 

8. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

9. Private communication with author, October 18, 1988. 

10. See Glenn D. Ktttler, Edgar Cayce on the Dead Sea Scrolls (New York: 
Warner Books, 1970). 

11. Marilyn Ferguson, "Quantum Brain-Action Approach Complements 
Holographic Model," Brain-Mind Bulletin, updated special issue (1978), p. 

12. Edmund Gurney, F. W. H. Myers, and Frank Podmore, Phantasms of the 
Living (London: Trubner's, 1886). 

13. See J. Palmer, "A Community Mail Survey of Psychic Experiences," 
Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 73 (1979), pp. 
221-51; H. Sidgwick and committee, "Report on the Census of Hallucina- 
tions," Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research 10 (1894), pp. 
25-422; and D. J. West, "A Mass-Observation Questionnaire on Halluci- 
nations," Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 34(1948), pp. 

14. W. Y. Evans- Wentz, The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries (Oxford: Oxford 
University Press, 1911), p. 485. 

15. Ibid., p. 123. 

16. Charles Fort, New Lands (New York: Boni & Liveright, 1923), p. 1 1 1 . 

17. See Max Freedom Long, The Secret Science behind Miracles (Tarry-town, 
NY.: Robert Collier Publications, 1948), pp. 206-8. 

18. Editors of Time-Life Books, Ghosts (Alexandria, Va.: Time-Life Books, 
1984), p. 75. 



19. Editors of Reader's Digest, Strange Stories, Amazing Facts (Pleasant-ville, 
N.Y.: Reader's Digest Association, 1976), pp. 384-85. 

20. J. B, Rhine, "Experiments Bearing oil the Precognition Hypothesis: III. 
Mechanically Selected Cards," Journal of Parapsychology 5 (1941). 

21. Helmut Schmidt, "Psychokinesis," in Psychic Exploration: A Challenge to 
Science, ed. Edgar Mitchell and John White (New York: G. P. Putnam's 
Sons, 1974), pp. 179-93. 

22. Montague Ullman, Stanley Krippner, and Alan Vaughan, Dream Telepathy 
(New York: Macmillan, 1973). 

23. Russell Targ and Harold Puthoff, Mind-Reach (New York: Delacorte Press, 
1977), p. 116. 

24. Robert G. Jahn and Brenda J. Dunne, Margins of Reality (New York: 
Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1987), pp. 160, 185. 

25. Jule Eisenbud, "A Transatlantic Experiment in Precognition with Gerard 
Croiset," Journal of American Society of Psychological Research 67 (1973), 
pp. 1-25; see also W. H. C. Tenhaeff, "Seat Experiments with Gerard 
Croiset," Proceedings Parapsychology 1 (1960), pp. 53-65; and U. Timm, 
"Neue Experiments mit dem Sensitiven Gerard Croiset," Z F. 
Parapsychologia und Grezgeb. dem Psychologia 9 (1966), pp. 30-59, 

26. Marilyn Ferguson, Bulletin, p. 4. 

27. Persona] communication with author, September 26, 1989, 

28. David Loye, The Sphinx and the Rainbow (Boulder, Col.: Shambhala, 

29. Bernard Gittelson, Intangible Evidence (New York: Simon & Schuster, 
1987), p. 174. 

30. Eileen Garrett, My Life as a Search for the Meaning ofMediumship (London: 
Ryder & Company, 1949), p. 179. 

31. Edith Lyttelton, Some Cases of Prediction (London: Bell, 1937). 

32. Louisa E. Rhine, "Frequency of Types of Experience in Spontaneous 
Precognition," Journal of Parapsychology 18, no. 2 (1954); see also 
"Precognition and Intervention," Journal of Parapsychology 19 (1955); and 
Hidden Channels of the Mind (New Yo >rk: Sloane Associates, 1961). 

33. E. Douglas Dean, "Precognition and Retrocognition," in Psychic Explo- 
ration, ed. Edgar D. Mitchell and John White (New York: G. P. Putnam's 
Sons, 1974), p. 163. 

34. See A. Foster, "ESP Tests with American Indian Children," Journal of 
Parapsychology 7, no. 94 (1943); Dorothy H. Pope, "ESP Testa with 
Primitive People," Parapsychology Bulletin 30, no. 1 (1953); Ronald Rose 
and Lyndon Rose, "Psi Experiments with Australian Aborigines," Journal 
of Parapsychology 15, no. 122 (1951); Robert L. Van de Castle, 
"Anthropology and Psychic Research," in Psychic Exploration, ed. Edgar D. 
Mitchell and John White (New York: G P. Putnam's Son3, 1974); and 
Robert L. Van de Castle, "Psi Abilities in Primitive Groups," Proceedings of 
the Parapsychological Association 7, no. 97 (1970). 



35. Ian Stevenson, "Precognition of Disasters," Journal of the American 
Society for Psychical Research 64, no. 2 (1970), 

36. Karlis Osis and J. Fabler, "Space and Time Variables in ESP," Journal of 
the American Society for Psychical Research 58 (1964). 

37. Alexander P. Dvtbrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and 
Contemporary Science, trans. Aleksandr Petrovich (New York: Consultants 
Bureau, 1982), pp. 93-104. 

38. Arthur Osbom, The Future Is Now: The Significance of Precognition (New 
York: University Books, 1961). 

39. Ian Stevenson, "A Review and Analysis of Paranormal Experiences 
Connected with the Sinking of the Titanic, " Journal of the American 
Society for Psychical Research 54 (1960), pp. 153-71; see also Ian Ste- 
venson, "Seven More Paranormal Experiences Associated with the Sinking 
of the Titanic, " Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 59 
(1965), pp. 211-25. 

40. Loye, Sphinx, pp. 158-65. 

41. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

42. Gittelson, Evidence, p. 175. 

43. Ibid., p. 125. 

44. Long, op. cit„ p. 165. 

45. Shafica Karagulla, Breakthrough to Creativity (Marina Del Rey, Calif: 
DeVorss, 1967), p. 206. 

46. According to H. N. Banerjee, in Americans Who Have Been Reincarnated 
(New York: Macmillan Publishing Company, 1980), p. 195, one study done 
by James Parejko, a professor of philosophy at Chicago State University, 
revealed that 93 out of 100 hypnotized volunteers produced knowledge of a 
possible previous existence; Whitton himself has found that all of his 
hypnotizable subjects were able to recall such memories. 

47. M. Gerald Edetstein, Trauma, Trance and Transformation (New York: 
Brunner/Mazel. 1981), 

48. Michael Talbot, "Lives between Lives: An Interview with Dr. Joel Whitton" 
Omni WholeMind Newsletter I, no. 6 (May 1988), p. 4. 

49. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day, 
1986), pp. 116-27. 

50. Ibid., p. 154. 

51. Ibid., p. 156. 

52. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987. 

53. Whitton and Fisher, Life, p. 43. 

54. Ibid., p. 47. 

55. Ibid., pp. 152-53. 

56. Ibid,, p. 52. 

57. William E. Cox, "Precognition: An Analysis I and II," Journal ofv 
American Society for Psychical Research 50 (1956)- 



58. Whitton and Fisher, Life, p. 186. 

59. See Ian Stevenson, Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation (Char- 
lottesville, Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1974); Cases of the Rein- 
carnation Type (Charlottesville, Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1974), 
vols. 1-4; and Children Who Remember Their Past Lives (Charlottesville, 
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987). 

60. See references above. 

61. Ian Stevenson, Children Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville, 
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), pp. 240-43. 

62. Ibid, pp. 259-60. 

63. Stevenson, Twenty Cases, p. 180. 

64. Ibid., pp. 1%,233. 

65. Ibid, p. 92. 

66. Sylvia Cranston and Carey Williams, Reincarnation: A New Horizon in 
Science, Religion, and Society (New York: Julian Press, 1984), p. 67. 

67. Ibid., p. 260. 

68. Ian Stevenson, "Some Questions Related to Cases of the Reincarnation 
Type," Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (October 
1974), p. 407. 

69. Stevenson, Children, p. 255. 

70. Journal of the American Medical Association (December 1,1975), as 
quoted in Cranston and Williams, Reincarnation, p. x. 

71. J. Warneck, Die Religion der Batak (Gottingen, 1909), as quoted in Hoiger 
Kalweit, Dreamtime and Inner Space: The World of the Shaman (Boulder, 
Colo.: Shambhala, 1984), p. 23. 

72. Basil Johnston, Und Manitu erscnufdie Welt. Mythen and Visionen der 
Ojibwa (Cologne: 1979), as quoted in Hoiger Kalweit, Dreamtime and 
Inner Space: The World of the Shaman (Boulder, Colo.: Shambhala, 1984), 
p. 25. 

73. Long, op. cit, pp. 165-69. 

74. Ibid., p. 193. 

75. John Blofeld, The Tantric Mysticism, of Tibet (New York: E. P. Dutton, 
1970), p. 84; see also Alexandra David-Neel, Magic and Mystery in Tibet 
(Baltimore, Md: Penguin Books, 1971), p. 293. 

76. Henry Corbin, Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn Arabi, trans. 
Ralph Manheim (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1969), pp. 

77. Hugh Lynn Cayce, The Edgar Cayce Reader. Vol. II (New York: Paper- 
back Library, 1969), pp. 25-26; see also Noel Langley, Edgar Cayce on 
Reincarnation (New York: Warner Books, 1967), p. 43. 

78. Paramahansa Yogananda, Man's Eternal Quest (Los Angeles: 
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1982), p. 238. 


79. Thomas Byron, The Dhammapada: The Sayings of Buddha (New York: 
Vintage Books, 1976), p. 13. 

80. Swami Prabhavananda and Frederick Manchester, trans., The Upani-ahads 
(Hollywood, Calif: Vedanta Press, 1975), p. 177. 

81. Iamblichus, The Egyptian Mysteries, trans. Alexander Wilder (New York: 
Metaphysical Publications, 1911), pp. 122, 175,259-60. 

82. Matthew 7: 7, 17,20. 

83. Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, The Thirteen-Petaled Rose (New York: Basic Books, 
1980). pp. 64-65. 

84. Jean Houston, The Possible Human (Los Angeles: J. P. Tarcher, 1982), pp. 

85. Mary Orser and Richard A. Zarro, Changing Your Destiny (San Francisco: 
Harper & Row, 1989), p. 213. 

86. Florence Graves, "The Ultimate Frontier: Edgar Mitchell, the Astro- 
naut-Turned-Philosopher Explores Star Wars, Spirituality, and How We 
Create Our Own Reality," New Age (May/June 1988), p. 87. 

87. Helen Wambach, Reliving Past Lives (New York: Harper & Row, 1978), p. 

88. Ibid., pp. 128-34. 

89. Chet B. Snow and Helen Wambach, Mass Dreams of the Future (New 
York: McGraw-Hill, 1989), p. 218. 

90. Henry Reed, "Reaching into the Past with Mind over Matter," Venture 
Inward 5, no. 3 (May /June 1989), p. 6. 

91. Anne Moberly and Eleanor Jourdain, An Adventure (London: Faber, 1904). 

92. Andrew Mackenzie, The Unexplained {London: Barker, 1966), as quoted 
in Ted Holiday, The Goblin Universe (St. Paul, Minn.: Llewellyn Publica- 
tions, 1986), p, 96. 

93. Gardner Murphy and H. L Klemme, "Unfinished Business," Journal of the 
American Society for Psychical Research 60, no. 4 (1966), p. 5. 


1. Dean Shields, "A Cross-Cultural Study of Beliefs in out-of-the-Body 
Experiences," Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 49 (1978), pp. 

2. Erika Bourguignon, "Dreams and Altered States of Consciousness in 
Anthropological Research," in Psychological Anthropology, ed. F. L. K. 
Hsu (Cambridge, Mass.: Schenkman, 1972), p. 418. 

3. Celia Green, Out-of-the-Body Experiences (Oxford, England Institute of 
Psychophysical Research, 1968). 



4. D. Scott Rogo, Leaving the Body (New York: Prentice-Hall, 1983), p. 5. 

5. Ibid. 

6. Stuart W. Twemlow, Glen 0. Gabbard, and Fowler C. Jones, "The 
Out-of-Body Experience-. 1, Phenomenology; II, Psychological Profile; III, 
Differential Diagnosis" (Papers delivered at the 1980 Convention of the 
American Psychiatric Association). See also Twemlow, Gabbard, and 
Jones, "The Osit-of-Body Experience: A Phenomenologica! Typology 
Based on Questionnaire Responses," American Journal of Psychiatry 139 
(1982), pp. 450-55. 

7. Ibid. 

8. Bruce Greyson and C. P. Flynn, The Near-Death Experience (Chicago: 
Charles C. Thomas, 1984), as quoted in Stanislov Grof, The Adventure of 
Self Discovery (Albany, N.Y.r SUNY Press, 1988), pp, 71-72. 

9. Michael B. Sabom, Recollections of Death (New York: Harper &. Row, 
1982), p. 184. 

10. Jean-Noel Bassior, "Astral Travel," New Age Journal (November/De- 
cember 1988), p. 46. 

11. Charles Tart, "A Psychophysiological Study of Out-of-the-Body Experi- 
ences in a Selected Subject," Journal of the American Society for Psychical 
Research 62 (1968), pp. 3-27. 

12. Karlis Osis, "New ASPR Research on Out-of-the-Body Experiences," 
Newsletter of the American Society for Psychical Research 14 (1972); see 
also Karlis Osis, "Out-of-Body Research at the American Society for 
Psychical Research," in Mind beyond the Body, ed. D. Scott Rogo (New 
York: Penguin, 1978), pp. 162-69. 

13. D. Scott Rogo, Psychic Breakthroughs Today (Wellingborough, Great 
Britain: Aquarian Press, 1987), pp. 163-64. 

14. J. H. M. Whiteman, The Mystical Life (London: Faber & Faber, 1961). 

15. Robert A. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body (New York: Anchor 
Press/Doubleday, 1971), p. 183. 

16. Robert A. Monroe, Far Journeys (New York: Doubleday, 1985), p. 64. 

17. David Eisenberg, with Thomas Lee Wright, Encounters with Qi (New York: 
Penguin, 1987), pp. 79-87. 

18. Frank Edwards, "People Who Saw without Eyes," Strange People (London: 
Pan Books, 1970). 

19. A. Ivanov, "Soviet Experiments in Eyeless Vision," International Jour-nal 
of Parapsychology 6 (1964); see also M. M. Bongard and M. S. Smirnov, 
"About the 'Dermal Vision' ofR. Kuleshova," Biophysics 1 (1965). 

20. A. Rosenfeld, "Seeing Colors with the Fingers," Life (June 12,1964); for a 
more extensive report of Kuleshova and "eyeless sight" in general, see 
Sheila Ostrander and Lynn Schroeder, Psychic Discoveries Behind the Iron 
Curtain (New York: Bantam Books, 1970), pp. 170-85. 

21. Rogo, Psychic Breakthroughs, p. 161. 



22. Ibid. 

23. Janet Lee Mitchell, Out-of-Body Experiences (New York: Ballantine Books, 
1987), p. 81. 

24. August Strindberg, Legends (1912 edition), as quoted in Colin Wilson, The 
Occult (New York: Vintage Books, 1973), pp. 56-57. 

25. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, p. 184. 

26. Whiteman, Mystical Life, as quoted in Mitchell, Experiences, p. 44. 

27. Karlis Osis and Erlendur Haraldsson, "Deathbed Observations by 
Physicians and Nurses: A Cross-Cultural Survey," The Journal of the 
American Society for Psychical Research 71 (July 1977), pp. 237-59. 

28. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., with Paul Perry, The Light Beyond (New York: 
Bantam Books, 1988), pp. 14-15. 

29. Ibid. 

30. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, On Children and Death (New York: Macrnillan, 
1983), p. 208. 

31. Kenneth Ring, Life at Death (New York: Quill, 1980), pp. 238-39. 

32. Kubler-Ross, Children, p. 210. 

33. Moody and Perry, Light, pp. 103-7. 

34. Ibid., p. 151. 

35. George Gallup, Jr., with William Proctor, Adventures in Immortality (New 
York: McGraw-Hill, 1982), p. 31. 

36. Ring, Life at Death, p. 98. 

37. Ibid., pp. 97-98. 

38. Ibid., p. 247. 

39. Private communication with author, May 24, 1990. 

40. F. W. H. Myers, Human Personality and Its Survival of Bodily Death 
(London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1904), pp. 315-21. 

41. Ibid. 

42. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 8. 

43. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day, 
1986), p. 32. 

44. Michael Talbot, "Lives between Lives: An Interview with Joel Whitton," 
Omni WholeMind Newsletter 1, no. 6 (May 1988), p. 4. 

45. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987. 

46. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 35. 

47. Myra Ka Lange, "To the Top of the Universe," Venture Inward 4, no. 3 
(May/June 1988), p. 42. 

48. F. W, H. Myers, Human Personality. 

49. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 129. 

50. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., Reflections on Life after Life (New York: Bantam 
Books, 1978), p. 38. 



51. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 39, 

52. Raymond A. Moody, Jr., Life after Life (New York: Bantam Books, 1976), 
p. 68. 

53. Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, p. 35. 

54. The 1 821 NDEer was the mother of the English writer Thomas De Quincey 
and the incident is described in his Confessions of an English Opium Eater 
with Its Sequels Suspiria De Prafundis and The English Mail-Coach, ed. 
Malcolm Elwin (London: Macdonald & Co., 1956), pp. 51 1-12. 

55. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, pp. 42-48. 

56. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 50. 

57. Ibid., p. 35. 

58. Kenneth Ring, Heading toward Omega (New York: William Morrow, 
1985), pp. 58-59. 

59. See Ring, Heading toward Omega, p. 199; Moody, Reflections on Life 
after Life, pp. 9-14; and Moody and Perry, Light, p. 35. 

60. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 35. 
61- Monroe, For Journeys, p. 73. 

62. Ring, Life at Death, p. 248. 

63. Ibid., p. 242. 

64. Moody, Life after Life, p. 75. 

65. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 13. 

66. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 186-87, 

67. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 22. 

68. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 217-18. 

69. Moody and Perry, Light, p. 34. 

70. Ian Stevenson, Children "Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville, 
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), p. 110. 

71. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 43. 

72. Wil van Beek, Hazrat Inayat Khan (New York: Vantage Press, 1983), p. 

73. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 101-15. 

74. See Leon S. Rhodes, "Swedenborg and the Near-Death Experience," in 
Emanuel Swedenborg: A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen et si. (New 
York: Swedenborg Foundation, 1988), pp. 237 A 40. 

75. Wilson Van Dusen, The Presence of Other Worlds (New York: Sweden- 
borg Foundation, 1974), p. 75. 

76. Emanuel Swedenborg, The Universal Human and Soul-Body Interaction, 
ed. and trans. George F. Dole (New York: Paulist Press, 1984), p. 43. 

77. Ibid. 

78. Ibid., p. 156. 



79. Ibid., p. 45. 

80. Ibid., p. 161. 

81. George F. Dole, "An Image of God in a Mirror," in Emanuel Swedenborg; 
A Continuing Vision, ed. Robin Larsen etal. (New York: Swedenborg 
Foundation, 1988), pp. 374-81. 

82. Ibid. 

83. Theophilus Parsons, Essays (Boston: Otis Clapp, 1845), p. 225. 

84. Henry Corbin, Mundus Imaginaiis (Ipswich, England: Golgonooza Press, 
1976), p. 4. 

85. Ibid., p. 7. 

86. Ibid., p. 5. 

87. Kubler-Ross, Children, p. 222. 

88. Private communication with author, October 28, 1988. 

89. P&Tamaivm&3.Yoganan<i&, Autobiography of a Yogi (Los Angeles: 
Self-Realization Fellowship, 1973), p. viii. 

90. Ibid., pp- 475-97. 

91. Satprem, Sri Aurobindo or the Adventure of Consciousness (New York: 
Institute for Evolutionary Research, 1984), p. 195. 

92. Ibid., p. 219. 

93. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, "The Dreamtime, Mysticism, and Liberation: 
Shamanism in Australia," in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wbeaton, 
III-: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), pp. 223-32. 

94. Holger Kalweit, Dreamtime and Inner Space (Boston: Sharobhala Pub- 
lications, 1984), pp. 12-13. 

95. Michael Hamer, The Way of the Shaman (New York: Harper & Row, 1980), 
pp. 1-8. 

96. Kalweit, Dreamtime, pp. 13, 57. 

97. Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 143-64. 

98. Ibid., pp. 114-20. 

99. Bruce Greyson, "Increase in Psychic and Psi-Related Phenomena Fol- 
lowing Near-Death Experiences," Theta, as quoted in Ring, Heading 
toward Omega, p. 180. 

100. Jeff Zaleski, "Life after Death: Not Always Happily-Ever-After," Omni 
WkoleMind Newsletter 1, no. 10 (September 1988), p. 5. 

101. Ring, Heading toward Omega, p. 50. 

102. John Gliedman, "Interview with Brian Josephson," Omni A, no. 10 (July 
1982), pp. 114-16. 

103. P. C. W. Davies, "The Mind-Body Problem and Quantum Theory," in 
Proceedings of the Symposium on Consciousness and Survival, ed. John S. 
Spong (Sausalito, Calif: Institute of Noetic Sciences, 1987), pp. 113-14. 



104. Candace Pert, Neuropeptides, the Emotions and Bodymind in Proceedings 
of the Symposium on Consciousness and Survival, ed. John S. Spong 
(Sausalito, Calif.: Institute of Noetic Sciences, 1987), pp. 113-14. 

105. David Bohm and Renee Weber, "Nature as Creativity," Revision 5, no. 2 
(Fall 1982), p. 40. 

106. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987. 

107. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 51 and 70. 

108. Dole, in Emanuel Swedenborg, p. 44. 

109. Whitton and Fisher, Life between Life, p. 45. 

110. See, for example, Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, pp. 13-14; and 
Ring, Heading toward Omega, pp. 71-72. 

111. Edwin Bernbaum, The Way to Skambhala (New York: Anchor Books, 
1980), pp. xiv, 3-5. 

112. Moody, Reflections on Life after Life, p. 14; and Ring, Heading toward 
Omega, p. 71. 

113. W. Y. Evans-Wentz, The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries (Oxford: Oxford 
University Press, 1911), p. 61. 

114. Monroe, Journeys Out of the Body, pp. 50-51. 

115. Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia (Chicago: Henry Regnery Co., 1969), 
p. 134. 

116. Private communication with author, November 3, 1988. 

117. D. Scott Rogo, Miracles (New York: Dial Press, 1982), pp. 256-57. 

118. Michael Talbot, "UFOs: Beyond Real and Unreal," in Gods of Aquarius, ed. 
Brad Steiger (New York; Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1976), pp. 28-33. 

119. Jacques Vallee, Dimensions: A Casebook of Alien Contact (Chicago: 
Contemporary Books, 1988), p. 259. 

120. John G. Fuller, The Interrupted Journey (New York: Dial Press, 1966), p. 

121. Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia, pp. 160-62. 

122. Talbot, in Gods of Aquarius, pp. 28-33. 

123. Kenneth Ring, "Toward an ImaginaJ Interpretation of 'UFO Abductions,' " 
Revision 11, no. 4 (Spring 1989), pp. 17-24. 

124. Personal communication with author, September 19, 1988. 

125. Peter M. Rojcewicz, "The Folklore of the 'Men in Black': A Challenge to 
the Prevailing Paradigm," Revision 11, no. 4 (Spring 1989), pp. 5-15. 

126. Whitley Strieber, Communion (New York: Beech Tree Books, 1987), p. 

127. Carl Raschke, "UFOs: Ultraterrestrial Agents of Cultural Deconstruc-tion," 
in Cyberbiological Studies of the Jmaginal Component in the UFO Contact 
Experience, ed. Dennis Stilungs (St. Paul, Minn.: Archa-eus Project, 1989), 
p. 24. 



128. Michael Grosso, "UFOs and the Myth of the New Age." in Cyberbiological 
Studies of the Imaginal Component in the UFO Contact Experience, ed. 
Dennis Stillings(St. Paul, Minn.: Archaeus Project, 1989), p. 81. 

129. Raschke, in Cyberbiological Studies, p. 24. 

130. Jacques Vallee, Dimensions: A Casebook of Alien Contact (Chicago: 
Contemporary Books, 1988), pp. 284-S9. 

131. John A. Wheeler, with Charles Misner and Kip S. Thome, Gravitation (San 
Francisco: Freeman, 1973). 

132. Strieber, Communion, p. 295. 

133. Private communication with author, June 8, 1988. 


1. John Blofeld, The Tantric Mysticism of Tibet (New York: E. P. Dutton, 
1970), pp. 61-62. 

2. Garma C. C. Chuang, Teachings of Tibetan Yoga (Secaucus, N J.: Citadel 
Press, 1974), p. 26. 

3. Blofeld, Tantric Mysticism, pp. 61-62. 

4. Lobsang P. Lhalungpa, trans., The Life of Milarepa (Boulder, Colo.: 
Shambhala Publications, 1977), pp. 181-62. 

5. Reginald Horace Blyth, Games Zen Masters Play, ed. Robert Sohl and 
Audrey Carr (New York: New American Library, 1976), p. 15. 

6. Margaret Stutley, Hinduism (Wellingborough, England: Aquarian Press, 
1985), pp. 9, 163. 

7. Swami Prabhavananda and Frederick Manchester, trans., The Upani-shads 
(Hollywood, Calif: Vedanta Press, 1975), p, 197. 

8. Sir John WoodrorTe, The Serpent Power (New York: Dover, 1974), p. 33. 

9. Stutley, Hinduism, p. 27. 

10. Ibid., pp. 27-28. 

11. WoodrorTe, Serpent Power, pp. 29, 33. 

12. Leo Schaya, The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah (Baltimore, Md.: 
Penguin, 1973), p, 67. 

13. Ibid. 

14. Serge King, "The Way of the Adventurer," in Shamanism, ed. Shirley 
Nicholson (Wheaton, 111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 193. 

15. E. Nandisvara Nayake Thero, "The Dreamtime, Mysticism, and Liberation: 
Shamanism in Australia," in Shamanism, ed. Shirley Nicholson (Wheaton, 
111.: Theosophical Publishing House, 1987), p. 226. 

16. Marcel Griaule, Conversations with Ogotemmeli (London: Oxford Uni- 
versity Press, 1965), p. 108. 

17. Douglas Sharon, Wizard of the Four Winds: A Shaman's Story (New York: 
Free Press, 1978), p. 49. 



18. Henry Corbin, Creative Imagination in the Sujism of Ibn 'Arabi, trans. 
Ralph Manheim (Princeton, NX: Princeton University Press, 1969), p. 259. 

19. Brian Brown, The Wisdom of the Egyptians (New York: Brentano's, 1923), 
p. 15G. 

20. Woodroffe, Serpent Power, p. 22. 

21. John G. Neihardt, Black Elk Speaks (New York: Pocket Books, 1972), p. 

22. Tryon Edwards, A Dictionary of Thought (Detroit F. B. Dickerson Co., 
1901), p. 196. 

23. Sir Charles Eliot, Japanese Buddhism {New York: Barnes & Noble, 1969), 
pp. 109-10. 

24. Alan Watts, Too: The Watercourse Way (New York: Pantheon Books, 
1975), p. 35. 

25. F. Franck, Book of Angelas Silesius (New York: Random House, 1976), as 
quoted in Stanislav Grof, Beyond the Brain (Albany, NY.: SUNY Press, 
1985), p. 76. 

26. " 'Holophonic' Sound Broadcasts Directly to Brain," Brain/Mind Bulletin 8, 
no. 10 (May 30, 1983), p. 1. 

27. "European Media See Holophony as Breakthrough," Brain/Mind Bulletin 8, 
no. 10 (May 30, 1983), p. 3. 

28. Ilya Prigogine and Yves Elskens, "Irreversibility, Stochasticity and 
Non-Locality in Classical Dynamics," in Quantum Implications, ed. Basil J. 
Hiley and F. David Peat (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1987), p. 214; 
see also "A Holographie Fit?" Brain/Mind Bulletin 4, no. 13 (May 21, 
1979), p. 3. 

29. Marcus S. Cohen, "Design of a New Medium for Volume Holographic 
Information Processing," Applied Optics 25, no. 14 (July 15, 1986), pp. 

30. Dana Z. Anderson, "Coherent Optical Eigenstate Memory," Optics Letters 
11, no. 1 (January 1986), pp. 56-58. 

31. Willis W. Harman, "The Persistent Puzzle: The Need for a Basic Re- 
structuring of Science," Noetic Sciences Review, no. 8 (Autumn 1988), p. 

32. "Interview: Brian L Weiss, M.D.," Venture Inward 6, no. 4 (July/ August 
1990), pp. 17-18. 

33. Private communication with author, November 9, 1987. 

34. Stanley R. Dean, C. 0. Plyier, Jr., and Michael L. Dean, "Should Psychic 
Studies Be Included in Psychiatric Education? An Opinion Survey," 
American Journal of Psychiatry 137, no. 10 (October 1980), pp. 1247-49. 

35. Ian Stevenson, Children Who Remember Previous Lives (Charlottesville, 
Va.: University Press of Virginia, 1987), p. 9. 



36. Alexander P. Dubrov and Veniamin N. Pushkin, Parapsychology and 
Contemporary Science (New York: Consultants Bureau, 1982), p. 13. 

37. Harman, Noetic Sciences Review, p. 25. 

38. Kenneth Ring, "Near-Death and UFO Encounters as Shamanic Initiations; 
Some Conceptual and Evolutionary Implications," Revision 11, no. 3 
(Winter 1989), p. 16. 

39. Richard Daab and Michael Peter Langevin, "An Interview with Whitley 
Strieber," Magical Blend25 (January 1990), p. 41. 

40. Lytle Robinson, Edgar Cayce's Story of the Origin and Destiny of Man 
(New York: Berkley Medallion, 1972), pp. 34, 42. 

41. From the Lankavatara Sutra as quoted by Ken Wilbur, "Physics, Mysticism, 
and the New Holographic Paradigm," in Ken Wilbur, The Holographic 
Paradigm (Boulder, Colo.: New Science Library, 1982), p. 161. 

42. David Loye, The Sphinx and the Rainbow (Boulder, Colo.: Shambhala 
Publications, 1983), p. 156. 

43. Terence McKenna, "New Maps of Hyperspace," Magical Blend 22 (April 
1989), pp. 58, 60. 

44. Daab and Langevin, Magical Blend, p. 41. 

45. McKenna, Magical Blend, p. 60. 

46. Emanuel Swedenborg, The Universal Human and Soul-Body Interaction, 
ed. and trans. George F. Dole (New York: Paulist Press, 1984), p. 54. 

47. Joel L. Whitton and Joe Fisher, Life between Life (New York: Double-day, 
1986), pp. 45-46. 


Achterberg, Jeanne, 83-87 

Acupuncture, II3-1G 

The Adventure of Self-Discovery, Grof, 

72 Afterlife realm, 244-48, 257-74 
Aggression, heart problems and, 102 Aging, 
multiple personality and, 99 Aharonov. 
Yakir, 43 Aharonov-Bohm effect, 44 AIDS, 
attitude and, 102 Alpert, Richard, 95-96 
Alzheimer's disease, 116-17 
Amphetamines, 96 Anaximenes of Miletus, 
290 Anderson, Dana Z., 294 Anderson, 
Robert M., Jr., 61 Angels of Mens, 283 
Angina pectoris, 90-91, 94 Animate matter, 
Bohm'a ideas, 50 Anomalons, 140, 159 
Antibiotics, placebo effect, 96 Apparitions, 
202-5 Araucanian Indian shamans, 187 
Archaeology, clairvoyants and, 198-200 
Archetypal images, 60, 71 Armies, spectral, 
204-5 Aspect, Alain, 3, 52-53 Aspirin, 91; 
and heart attacks, 97 Associative memory, 
21-22 Athletic performance, imagery and, 

87-S8 Attitudes, 102; and 
health, 118 Atwater, Phyllis, 270 
Augustine, St., 119 Auras, 
165-84, 202 

Auriculotherapy, 113-15 Aurobindo Ghose, 
Sri, 263-65 Australian shamans, aboriginal, 

285, 289, 299-300; afterlife idea. 266 
Autobiography of a Yogi, Yogananda, 

152-53 Autosuggestion, stigmata 
as. 109 Avatamsaka Sutra, 290-91 
Awareness, energy field and, 192 
Ayahuasca, 187, 266 

Barrett, William, 142 

Basketball players, 88 

Batak people, Indonesia, 220 

Bede, Venerable, 127, 240 

Beings of light, 250, 256, 271-74, 302; 

Sri Aurobindo and, 264; UFOs, 282-84 
Bekesy, Georg von, 25, 54 Beliefs: 
addiction to, 6-7; health and, 

85, 101-10; and psychic abilities, 

204-5; and reality, 137 Bell, John 
Stewart, 43, 52 Benevolence of universe, 
250 Benson, Herbert, 94-95 Bentov, Itzhak, 
162 Bernadette of Lourdes, 135-36 
Berabaum, Edwin, 272 Bernstein, Nikolai, 
28-29 Between-life realm, 215-17, 247. 

also Afterlife realm Beyond the Brain, 
Grof, 59 Beyond the Quantum, Talbot, 149, 
-Mi Bible, 222 
Big Bang theory, 397 
Bilocstion, 160-61 




Birth control, unconscious, 101 

Black Elk (Oglala Sioux shaman), 290 

Blake, William, 50 

Blind spot, 163 

Blofeld, John, 287 

Blood miracles, 113-20, 146-47, 153-54, 

Body: afterlife state, 246-48; energy field 

and, 219; holographic, 161 
Body functions, mental control Qf, 

Body reading, 184 
Body responses, 121 
Bohm, David, 1-2, 4-5, 31-33, 37-55, 138, 

193, 200, 287, 290, 302; afterlife, 261; 

consciousness, 61, 289; human energy 

field, 178-79; implicate order, 84, 288; 

near-death realm, 271; precognition, 212; 

psychokinesis, 121-22; quantum reality, 

Bohr, Niels, 35-37; Bohm and, 38-39 
Bonaventura, St., 109 
Bones, healing of, 106, 107-8, 127-28 
Bourguignon, Erika, 230 
Brain, 2, 11-<31, 54, 84; and 

consciousness, 160; energy field and, 

192; image projected outside of, 109-10; 

and physical condition, 117-18; and 

vision, 163 
Brain-wave patterns of multiple 

personality, 76, 77 
Braun, Bennett, 98, 99 
Breakthrough to Creativity, 

Karagulla, 172 
Brennan, Barbara, 167-69, 184-86, 190 
Breznitz, Shlomo, 87-88 
Briggs, John P., 32 
Brigham, William Tufts, 128 
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, 222 
British Medical Journal, 127 
Brocq's disease, 105, 108 
Brody, Jane, 97 
Brunner, Werner, 103 
Buddha, 222 
Buddhism: Tibetan, 221, 287; Zen, 

Buffalo Bill, 76-78 

Caffeine, 96 

Camisards, 135 

Can We Explain the Poltergeist, 

Owen, 149 Cancer, 102; mental imagery 
and, 83-86 Cardiac arrest, and out-of-body 

experience, 231-33 Carr, Audrey, 
287-88 Cassandra (multiple personality), 
99-100 Castaneda, Carlos, 138, 145, 

Causality and Chance in Modern Physics, 
Bohm, 40 

Cause-and-effect relationships, 40 

Cavalier, Jean, 135 

Cayce, Edgar, 202, 221-22, 299 

Ceylonese fire-walking ritual, 136 

Chair tests, 207 

Chakras, 166, 172, 174, 175, 190, 221 

Changing Your Destiny, Orser and Zarro, 

Chaotic phenomena, 176-78 

Chayla, Abbe du, 135 

Chemical phenomena, anomalous, 293 

Chemotherapy, side effects, 97 

Child, Irving L., 6 

Children: near-death experiences, 250-51, 
253-54; past-life recall, 217, 218; 
Shainberg's view, 74 

Christian miracles, 108-11 

Cis-platinum, 94 

Cities, in afterlife realm, 272-73 

Clairvoyance, Garrett's description, 208 

Clairvoyants, and archaeology, 198-200 

Claris (Camisard leader), 135 

Clark, Kimberly, 231-32 

Coggtn, Ruth, 146-47 

Cohen, Marcus S., 294 

Coker, Nathan, 136 

Cold medications, placebo effects, 96 

Collective memory, LSD and, 68-69 

Collective unconscious, 60-61, 276, 285, 
299; and UFOs, 278-79, 281, 284 

Combs, J. A. K., 128 

Communication: in afterlife, 258; 
faster-than-light, 36-37 

Composite images, holographic, 71 

Computer chips, 121 

Computers, holographic, 294 

Combo Indians, 266 

Connectedness, extrasensory, 143-45. See 
also Interconnectedness 

Consciousness, 59, 81; altered states, 2-3; 
Bohm's ideas, 49-50; collective, 285; 
holographic, 235; nonordinary states, 
67-72; and out-of-body experience, 234; 
and psychokinesis, 125-26, 133, 136-38; 
and reality, 158-61; Sri Aurobindo and, 
264, 265; and subatomic particles, 
139-46; universal, 284-85; views of, 74, 
146, 288, 289. See also Collective 

Constantine's army, 283 

Corbin, Henry, 260 

Cordero, Tony, 208, 212 

Cosmos, as hologram, 32-55 

Cox, William, 216 

Creation, 189; of future, 212-13; myths 


of, 300; participation in, 191; of 
subatomic particles, 140, 146, 284 

Creative Visualization, Gawain, 222 

Crichton, Michael, 174 

Croiset, Gerard, 199-200, 207 

Crookall, Robert, 230 

Crown chakra, 166 

Cultural beliefs, 101-2 

Cultural differences in near-death 
experiences, 256 

Dajo, Mirin, 103-4 Dale, Ralph Alan. 
115-16 DaSibard, Jean, 52-53 Davies. John, 
204 Davies, Paul, 53, 79, 270 Death, views 
of, 2, 26 1 Descartes, Rene, 247 d'Espagnat, 
Bernard, 54 DeValois, Karen and Russell, 
27-28 Disease, energy fields and, 188-89 
Disembodied states, 246-48. See also 

Out-of-body experiences Disorder, 
44-46 Dissipatrve structures, 293 
Distribution: of information, 48; of 

memory, 13-14, 30; of vision, 20 Divine 
intelligence, 285 Doctors: and auras, 
171-74; and drug 

effectiveness, 92 Dogon people, Sudan, 
289 Dole, George F.. 259 Don Juan (Yaqui 
shaman), 138, 155-56, 

160 Dorsett, Sybil, 99 Dosage, and 
placebo effects, 91-92 Dossey, Larry, 30, 
89-90, 197 Dreams, 60-65, 182; 
information in, 252; 

location in, 234; lucid, 3, 65-66; and 

objective reality, SO; out-of-body 

experiences and, 272-73n; 

precogTutive, 205, 209-10; reality as, 

285 Dreams of a Spirit-Seer, Kant, 257 
Dreamtime and Inner Space, Kalweit, 

195 Drugs, effectiveness of, 94-97, 99 
Dryer, Carol, 169, 180-83, 186, 192, 284 
Dubrov, Alexander P., 110, 297-98 Dunne, 
BrendaJ., 5, 123-26, 139-40, 

Dychtwald, Ken, 57 

Ear acupuncture, 113-15 Egyptian Book of 
the Dead, 240, 241 Eidetic memory, 23-24 
Einstein, Albert, 35-39, 48 Eisenberg, 
David, 236 

Eisenbud, Juie, 207 Electromyograms 
(EMGs), 174-76 Electrons, 33-34, 
140, 159; Bohm's 

ideas, 47, 48, 50, 122; in plasma, 38 
Emerson, Norman, 199 Emotions, 
holographic record, 203 Empedoeles, 290 
Energy, in space, Bohm's ideas, 51-52 
Energy fields, human, 165-93 Enfolded 
order. See Implicate order Engrams, 11-13 
Epileptics, brain studies, 12 EPR 
(Einstein-Podolsky- Rosen) paradox, 

37 ESP. See Extrasensory 
perception Estebany, Oscar, 172 
Ethericbody, 166. 170, 188-89 
Evans-Wentz, W. Y., 203-4, 262 
Evolution, psychic, 299-302 
Experience, holographic idea, 84 
Experiments in Distant Influence, 

Vasiliev, 142 Explicate order, 46-48 
External realities, 24-25 Extrasensory 
perception (ESP), 141-44, 

210; dream experiments, 6, 61- A 2 
Eye, blind spot, 163 Eyeless sight, 

Fahler, J„ 210 Fairies, 203-4 The 
Eatry-Faith in Celtic Countries, 

Evans-Wentz, 204 Faith, beliefs and, 
107-10 Familiar things, recognition of, 
22-23 Far Journeys, Monroe, 233 
Faster-than-light communication, 36-37, 

53 Fasting state, 153-54, 256 Fa-Tsang, 
291 Feinberg, Leonard, 136 Feinstein, 
Bertram, 191-92 Fenske, Elizabeth W., 
245-46 The Final Choice, Grosso, 276 
Fingerprint patterns, 117 Fire, 
invulnerability to, 133-36 Floyd, Keith, 
160 Flying dreams, 272-73n Food, life 
without, 153-54 Forgetting, 21 Forhan, 
Marcel Louis, 239 Form, disembodied, 
235, 247-48, 274 Fourier, Jean B. J„ 26 
Fourier transforms, 27-29 Fragmentation, 
75-76; Bohm's views, 

49. dreams and, 63; Sri Aurobindo 

and, 264-65; synehronicitiea and, 80 
France, mass psychokinesis, 128-32 



Francis of Assisi, St., 108, 109-10 
Francis of Paula, St, 133 
Freeman, Walter, 4 
Freewill, 192,211-13,217-18 
Frequency analysis, senses as, 28 
Frequency domain, reality as, 164-65 
Fromm, Erich, 182 
Future: control of, 220-28; holographic, 

205-13; outrof-body visits to, 237-38 
The Future Is Now: The Significance 

of Precognition, Osborti, 210 Future 
Science, White and Krippner, 


Gabbard, Glen, 230-31 

Gabor, Dennis, 27, 291 

Galgani, Gemma, 109 

Gallup, George, Jr., 244 

Gomes Zen Masters Play, Sohl and 
Carr, 287-88 Gardner, Rex, 

127-28, 146-17 Garfield, 

Charles A., 88 Garrett, Eileen, 

200, 208 Gawain, Shakti, 222 

Gerber, Richard, 188-89 

Globus, Gordon, 138. 160 

Gnostics, 290 

God, 285; creation of universe, 189 

Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von, 230 

Gordon, Jim, 273n Greek philosophers, 

290 Green, Celia, 230 Gremlin effect, 124 

Greyson, Bruce, 270 Grof Christina, 72 

Grof Stanislav, 2, 59. 66-72, 133, 158, 
248 Grosso, Michael, 111, 275-76, 281, 
299 Grosvenor, Donna and Gilbert, 104 

Habits, universe as, 137 

Halifax, Joan, 248 

Hallucinogenic experiences, 60, 266-68 

Halos, 165. See also Auras 

Hammid, Hella, 206-7 

Hands of Light, Erennan, 169 

Haraldsson, Erlendur, 150-52, 160-61, 

230, 241 Harary, Keith, 234, 238 
Harman, Willis, 294-95, 298 Hamer, 
Michael, 187, 266-68, 284, 298 Hauntings, 
202-5 Hay, Louise L., 222 Heading 
toward Omega, Ring, 299 Healers, and 
auras, 167-68, 172-73 Healing: by 
kahunas, 221; miraculous, 

107-8, 146-47; multiple personality 

and, 99-100; by psychokinesis, 
127-28; by visualization, 83, 188-89 
Health, multiple personality and, 

97-100. See also Illness Hearing, sense 
of, 28 Heaven, 244-48; Swedenborg's idea, 
259 Heimholtz, Hermann von, 28 
Henderson, David K., 171 Heraciitus, 290 
Herbert, Nick, 34 Hermes Trisroegistus, 
290 Hidden order, 45 Hierarchies of order, 
Bohm's idea, 

44-46 Higher consciousness, 299 Higher 
sense perception (HSP). 171-72 Hill, 
Barney and Betty, 278 Hilton, James, 272 
Hinduism, 288, 290-91; creation myth, 
300; and human energy fields, 178, 
190 A History of the English Church and 
People, Bede, 240 Holodeck, 
reality as, 158-59 Holograms, 1, 
Bohm and, 46-48; future as, 212; past 
as, 200-205 Holographic Body 
Assessment, 184 Holographic idea, 1-3, 
7,126, 138, 139; 
of brain, 11-31, 54; future of, 
292-302; and near-death experiences, 
244-46; paranormal events and, 5-6; 
psychology and, 59-81; of reality, 144, 
211-12; of universe, 32-55, 234, 285, 
286-89 Hololeaps, 212 Holomovement, 
Bohm's idea, 47-49, 50; 

habits of, 137; universe as, 121 
Holophonic sound, 292-93 Holotropic 
therapy, 72 Honorton, Charles, 206 
Houston, Jean, 222 Howtand, Francine, 98 
Huguenot miracles, 135 The Human 
Encounter -with Death, 

Grof and Halifax, 248 Human 
energy fields, 165-93 Hume, David, 
131 Hunt, Valerie, 174-78, 192, 297 
Huxley, Aldous, 230 Huxley, T. H, 9 
Hypnosis, 105, 108, 141-44, 297-98; 
past life investigations, 224; and 
precognition, 210; and reincarnation, 

lamblichus, 222 

Illness, 89-90, 188-89; diagnosis from 



energy field, 167-68, 170-72, 185-86, 

187; imagery and, 86-87 Imagery in 
Healing, Achterberg, 35 Imagery 
techniques, 83-85, 188 Images: from 
afterlife realm, 274; in 

human energy fields, 179-83; 

projected outside of htain, 109-10 
Imaginat realm, 260, 272-73, 280-81 
Imagination, 84; Sufis and, 260 Immune 
systems, 112; attitude and, 102 Implicate 
order, 46-48, 51-52, 178-79, 

271; brain function and, 84; 

consciousness and, 50, 61, 74, 136-37; 

dreams and, 63; human energy field 

and, 188; human participation, 74; 

interference patteruE, 164; 

precognition and, 212; psychosis and, 

63-05; synchronicities and, 79-80; 

time and, 200-201; transpersonal 

experiences and, 70 Inanimate matter, 
Bohm's ideas, 50 Indridason, Indridi, 161 
media, 153-54, 256 Information, 21, 121; 

141-44; from holographic reality. 146; 

subatomic particles and, 122; from 

transpersonal experiences, 71 
Ink-in-giycerine device, 44-46 
Intelligence: of body parts, 186-87; 

nonhuman, 284-85 
Intereonnectedneas, 35-38, 254-55; 

Bohm and, 38, 41-44, 47-49; 

extrasensory, 143-45; health and, 

89-90; precognition and, 208; Sri 

Aurobindo and, 264-65; universal, 

60-61, 70, 81, 146, 289, 290-91 
Interference holography, 23 
Interference patterns, 14-16, 22; in 

brain, 20 Internal vision, 185-87 The 
Interpretation and Nature of the 

Psyche. Jung and Pauli, 79 
Intraholographic leaps, 212 
Iridology, 116 Irwin, Harvey, 

Jahenny, Marie-Julie, 111 

Jahn, RobertG, 5, 122-26, 139-10, 146, 

207; on reality, 160 Jansenist miracles, 
128-32 Januarius, St, miracle of, 1 19-20 
Jivaro Indian shamans, 187 Jones, Fowler, 
231 Josephson, Brian D., 54, 145, 270 
Jourdain, Eleanor, 226-27 Journey to Mian, 
Castaneda, 155-56 Journeys Out of the 
Body, Monroe, 


Joy, W. Brugh, 173-74 Judaic views of 
reality, 288-89, 290 Judgment, in afterlife, 
250 Jue, Ronald Wong, 184 Jung, Carl, 60; 
and synchronicity, 76 78-79; and UFOs, 

Kabbalah, 165, 288-89 

Kahunas (Hawaiian shamans), 128 133 

212, 220-21, 289 Kalweit Holger, 195, 
266-67, 268 Kant lmmanuel, 257 Karagulla, 
Shafica, 171-72, 1 84 Kena Upanishad, 288 
Khan, Hazrai Inayat, 165, 255 Kidney 
transplants, 101-2 Klopfer, Bruno, 93-94 
Knock, Ireland, miracles, 275 Knowledge, 
in afterlife, 251-53, 258, 

269, 272-73, 302 Koch, Robert, 101 
Krebiozen, 93-94 Krieger, Dolores, 172-73 
Krippner, Stanley, 165, 206, 208 
Kubler-Ross, Elisabeth, 168, 239, 241-42 
Kuleshova, Rosa, 237 Kunz, Dora, 172 

Lame Deer (Lakota shaman), 286 

Langs, Robert, 95 

Language of psyche, 182 

Laser light 14-15 

Lashley, Karl, 12-13, 18 

Lawlis, G. Frank, 87 

Lawrence, D. H, 230 

Layers of aura, 166, 188-90 

Learned skill transference, 24 

Learning, 13; physical, 29-30 

Legends, Strindberg, 238 

Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm, 291 

LeShan, Lawrence, 200 

Levenson, Edgar A., 72-73 

Leviton, Richard, 116 

Libet Benjamin, 191-92 

Life: Bohm's ideas, 50; purpose of, 302 

Life after Life, Moody, 239, 254 

Life at Death, Ring, 229, 244 

Life plans, 253-55 

life review, in near-death experiences, 
241, 248-53; Swedenborg's account, 
258 Linton, Harriet 95 Little Man in the 

Ear, 113-15 Location, 41-13; of hologram, 

25 Lombroso, Cesare, 236-37 London, Jack, 

230 Looking Glass Universe, Briggs and 
Peat, 32 



Lost Horizon, Hilton, 272 

Louis XIV, King of France, 135 

Louis XV, King of France, 129,131 

Lourdes, miraculous cures, 106-8 

Love, importance of, 250-51 

Low, Medicine, and Miracles, Siege], 

86-87 Loye, David, 208, 211-12, 254, 
300 LSD, 67-70, 95-96 Lucid dreams, 3, 
65-66, 298 Ludlow, Christy, 99 Lyttleton, 
Edith, 209 

McCallie, David P-, Jr., 95 

McCarthy, Joseph, 4 

McDonnell, James S , III, 126 

McDougall, William, 132 

McKenna, Terence, 300-301 

McMullen, George, 199, 202 

Maimonides, 290 

Manic-depressive disorder, 64 

Many Lives, Many Masters, Weiss, 295 

Marriage, and immune systems, 102 

Mary, Virgm, appearances, 275-76, 299 

Maslow, Abraham, 70 

Mason, A. A. p 105 

Mass Dreams of the Future, Snow and 

Wambach, 224 Mass psychokinesis, 
128-32 Materializations, 147-54 Matter, 
122, 136; Bohm's ideas, 51; 

consciousness and, 49-50, 264 
Matthews-Simon ton, Stephanie, 37 
Meaning, 121; Bohm's views, 145-46 
Meditation, and psychokinesis, 226 Meier, 
Carl Alfred, 78-79 Memory. 3, 11-14, 17, 
21, 30 Mental body, healing and, 188-89 
Mental retardation, cancer and, 86 
Mephenesm, 96 Mermin, N. David, 140 
Metaconsciousness, 215-17, 250 Michelli, 
Vittorio, 106-8 Microsystems, 
acupuncture, 113-16 Milarepa (Tibetan 
yogin), 287 Mind, 191-93; afterlife realm, 
245-46 Miracles, 119-61, 139, 154-55, 

healing, 106-8, 14647 Mitchell, Edgar, 
223 Mitchell, Janet Lee, 233, 237 Moberly, 
Anne, 226-27 Modern Miracles: An 

Report on Psychic Phenomena 

Associated with Sathya Sai Baba, 

Haraldsson, 151-52 
Mohotty, 104, 108, 136 
Moler, Gabrielle, 134-35 
Moniz, Egas, 4 

Monroe, Robert, 233, 235, 239, 252, 272, 

274, 298; out-of-body experiences, 257 
Montgeron, Louis-Basile Carre de, 

130-31 Moody, Raymond A., Jr., 239, 
241, 254, 

270 Morris, Robert, 233-34 Morse, 
Melvin, 242-43 Motoyama, Hiroshi, 190 
Movement, brain and, 28-29, 87-88 
Multiple personality disorder (MPD), 

74-76; health and, 97-100 
Murphy, Gardner, 227 Muza, 
Irene, 210 

The Mystery of the Mind, Penfield, 12 The 
Mystical Life, Whiteman, 235 Mysticism, 
63, 165, 176; Tibetan, 221 Myths, 60, 182; 
UFOs and, 278-81 

Naegeli-Osjord, Hans, 103 — 4 Naples, San 
Gennaro miracle, 119-20 National 
Geographic, 104, 136 Near-death 
experiences (NDEs), 2, 

239-62, 265-66, 299, 301; effects of, 
268-73; science and, 297 Neumann, 
Therese, 110, 120-21, 153-54, 

165,256 Neurons, 20; response of, 31 
Neuropeptides, 1 12 Neurophysiology, 3 
Neurosis of universe, matter as, 137 
Neutrinos, 140 New York Herald, 136 New 
York Times Magazine, 126 Nogier, Paul, 

Nonhuman intelligences, LSD and, 69 
Nonlocality, 41-44, 53, 79, 122; of 
consciousness, 234; of human energy 
field, 169, 179; of reality, 47-48, 261; 
of retrucognition, 201-2; of universe, 
290,291 Nonmanifest order, 45 
Nonordinary consciousness states, 

67-72 Nonphysical beings. See Beings of 
light Nontraditional medical remedies, 90 
Nuclear arms race, 74 

OBEs. See Out-of-body experiences 
Objective reality, 80-81,145 Objectivity, 
scientific, 297-98 Objects, consciousness 
of, 146 Observation, subatomic particles 

35-36 Oglala Sioux medicine man, 
290 Ojibway Indians, 220 Oleson, 
Terry, 113-15 Omnijective universe, 



On Yoga, Sri Aurobindo Ghose, 264 

Oppenheimer, Robert, 4 

Order, Bohm's ideas, 44-46 

Organ transplants, 101-2 

Orser, Mary, 223 

Osbom. Arthur, 210 

Osis, Karlis, 152, 210, 233, 237-38, 241 

Osmic frequencies, 28 

Ossowiecki, Stefan, 198-99, 202 

Other-world Journeys, Zaleski, 240 

Out-of-body experiences (OBEs), 230-39, 

257, 260, 272-73, 296, 298 
Owen, A. R. G-, 149 

Pain, sensation of, 25 Palmistry, 116-17 
Parallel universes, 66, 211, 254 
Parapsychology, science and, 5-6 Paris, 
Francois de, 128-31 Participatory science, 
297-98 Particles. See Subatomic particles 
Passport to Magonia, Vallee, 278-80 Past 
change of, 225-26; as hologram, 

200-205; visits to, 226-28, 238 Past-life 
investigations, 224-25 Patterns of 
interference, 14-16, 22; in 

brain, 20 Pauli, Wolfgang, 79, 124, 140 
Peak Performance: Mental Training 

Techniques of the World's Greatest 

Athletes, Garfield, 88 PEAR. See 
Princeton Engineering 

Anomalies Research laboratory Peat, F. 
David, 3, 32, 79-81, 137 Pecci, Ernest, 184 
Pell, Claiborne, 270 Penfield, Wilder, 12, 
171 Penrose, Roger, 54 Pentecostals, fire 
immunity, 136 Perception, 3, 141-44; 

239 Personal flashforwards, 253-54 
Personal resonance, 61 Pert, Candace, 112, 
270-71, 273 Phantasms of the Living, 202 
Phantom limb sensations, 25-26 Philippine 
psychic healers, 126-27 Phillips, Robert A., 
Jr., 99 Philo Judaeus, 290 Philosophical 
Essays, Hume, 131 Photographic memory, 
23-24 Photons, polarization of, 36 The 
Physical Phenomena of 

Mysticism, Thurston, 109, 133, 154, 

165 Physical responses to meaning, 121 
Physicists, and quantum physics, 


Physics laws, ashabits pf universe l A i 
Physiological ettects ot mental lraaie 
84-85 uuage, 

Pietsch, Paul, 26 

Pinball experiments, 123-24 

Pio, Padre, 110, 111 

PK. See Psychokinesis 

Placebo effects, 90-97 

Planes of being, Sufi idea, 221 

Plasma, 38, 50, 122 

Plasmons, 38 

Plato, 240, 241, 290 

Podolsky, Boris, 36 

Polarization, 36 

Pollen, Daniel, 23 

Poltergeists, 148-50 

Poniatowski, Stanislaw, 198-99 

Positronium, 36, 42, 47 

Positrons, 36 

The Possible Human, Houston, 222 

Potential futures, 225 

Practical Astral Projection, Forhan, 

239 Prebirth memories, LSD and, 67-68 
Precognition, 69, 205-13, 238, 253-54 
Predetermination, 211, 215-18, 253-55 
Prefrontal lobotomy, 4 Pregnancy, 
unconscious prevention, 101 Pribram, Karl, 
1-2, 4-5, 54-55, 90, 287; 

brain studies, 11-14, 18-20, 28-31, 

163; and past time, 202; reality 

viewed by, 31, 138, 164-65 
Prigogine, Ilya, 293 

Primitive cultures, precognition, 209-10 
Princeton Engineering Anomalies 

Research laboratory (PEAR), 5, 

123-26, 142, 207 Proust, Marcel, 
21-22 P si-Healing, Stetter, 104 
Psyche, 100, 169-71; language of. 

182-83. See also Unconscious 
Psychic ability, 5-6; near-death 

experience and, 270; of Talbot, 157 
Psychic healers, Philippine, 126-27 
Psychic information, 252-53 Psychic 
phenomena, science and, 294-98 Psychics, 
176, 185-87, 201-2, 208; and 

auras, 179-83 Psychoanalysis, 
Levenson's view, 72-73 Psychokinesis 
(PK), 120-32, 149; change 

of past, 226; Sri Aurobindo and, 264 
Psychology, holographic model, 59-81 
Psychometry. 146. 198-200 
Psychoneuroimmurtology, H 2 , 284 
Psychosis, and implicate order, 63 — 65 
Psychotherapy, LSD and, 67-70 Pushkin, 
VeniammN,, 110, 297-98 Puthoff, Harold, 
142, 206-7, 208 

3 36 


Putnam, Frank, 76 
Pythagoras, 290 

Quanta, 34, 47 

Quantum physics, 7-8, 33-37, 53, 

139-40 Quantum potential, 
39-43 Quantum reality, 34-36 
Quantum Theory, Bohm, 39 
Quantum waves, 121-22 Quinn, 
Janet, 173 

Racial memories, LSD and, 68-69 
Random event generator (REG), 123 
Randomness, 44-46 Rasehke, Carl, 281-82, 
299 Reality, 5, 31, 70, 121, 191, 237, 256; 
afterlife realm, 262-63; consciousness and, 
139-46; frequency aspects, 239, 244-45; 
holographic, 11, 144-45, 211-12, 285; 
implicate level, 271; miracles and, 154; 
near-death experience and, 265-66; 
participation in, 191; psychosis and, 63-64; 
quantum, 34-35; subquantum, 47-48; 
synchro nici ties and, 79-31; views of, 133, 
138, 146, 157-61, 164-65, 270, 287-91, 
300-301; Bohm's views, 46-48, 84; Jahn's 
views, 125-26; Pribram's views, 54-55; Sn 
Aurobindo's vie WE. 265; Sufi views, 221, 
261; Swedenborg's views, 259 Reality 
fields, 159-60; hypnotic, 144-45 
Recognition holography, 22-23 
Recollection, 21 
Recording, holographic, 292-93 
Recovering the Soul, Dossey, 197 
Reflexology, 116 

Reincarnation, 213-23, 224-25, 295 
Relatively independent subtotalities, 49 
Relativity, Einstein's theory, 48 Religion, 
137, 269; health and, 107-10; 
Sri Aurobindo and, 265 Religious visions, 
60, 182 Remote viewing, 142, 145, 206-8 
The Republic, Plato, 240, 241 Resonance: 
between consciousness and reality, 125; of 
meaning, 122, 145-46; therapeutic, 73 
Restate, Richard, 30 Retrocognition, 
199-202, 238 Rhine, Louisa, 205-6, 209, 
296 Rich, Beatrice, 179-80, 181, 201 
Richardson, Alan, 83 Ring, Kenneth, 2, 
229, 244-46, 253, 

269-70, 280, 299 Roger, Gerard, 
52-53 Rogo, D. Scott, 10S, 120, 159, 

Rohrlich, Fritz, 139 

Rojcewicz, Peter M., 280 
Rosen, Nathan, 36 Russell, 
George, 273 

Sabom, Michael B., 232-33 

Sai Baba, Sathya, 150-52, 160-61, 165, 

256 Salamanders, brain studies. 26 
San Gennaro, miracle of, 1 19-20 
Schaya, Leo, 288-B9 Schizophrenia, 
64 Schlitz, Marilyn, 225-26 Schmidt, 
Helmut, 206, 225-26 Schwartz, 
Stephan A., 200 Schwarz, Berthold, 
136 Schwarz, Jack, 102-3 Science, 
5-6; basic restructuring, 

294-98; and near-death experiences, 

244 Scientific American, 104 The 
Secret Vaults of Time, Schwartz, 

200 Seidl (medical doctor), 153 Self: 
as hologram, 76; reality of, 55 
Self-reference cosmology, 284 Senses, 
holographic function, 28 Shadrach, 
Meshach, and Abednego, 

133 Shainberg, David, 73-74 Shamans, 
187, 266-67, 289; Hawaiian, 

128, 133; Indonesian, 154-55; Yaqui 

Indian, 138, 155-56 Shapeshifting, 47 
Sharon, Douglas, 289 Shiels, Dean, 230 
Shimony, Abner, 53-54 Shu/fiebrain, 
Pietsch, 26 Side effects of placebos, 
96-97 Siegel, Bernie S„ 6, 86-57, 168 
Simonton, 0, Carl, 82-84, 87 Smell, sense 
of, 28 Smolin, Lee, 53 Snow, Chet B., 
224 Sobel, David, 92 Sohl, Robert, 
287-88 Sohrawardj, 261 Solimani, 
Giovanna Maria, 110 Soma-significant 
diseases, 87 Sonnet. Marie, 134-35 Soul, 
questions of, 213-23 Sound, holographic, 
292-93 Soviet Union; and holographic 

110-11; imagery by athletes, 88 Space, 
51-52, 229-30; and near-death 

experiences, 245 Spacelessness, 
229-30 Spirit journeys, shatnanic, 



Spirit realm, 271. See also Afterlife 

realm Spirituality, religion and, 269 
Spontaneous past-life recall, 217 Stalking 
the Wild Pendulum, Bentov, 

162 Star Trek The Next Generation, 158 
Steinsalte, Rabbi, 222 Stelter, Alfred, 104 
Stevenson, Ian, 217-19, 296 Stigmata, 
108-11, 120-21, 153-54, 188 Stress, health 
and, 102 Strieber, Whitley, 280-81, 284, 
299, 300 Strindberg, August, 230, 238 
Subatomic events, interconnectedness 

of, 35-38; Bohm and, 38, 41M4 
Subatomic particles, 3, 33-37, 121-22, 

139-46, 159, 284 Subquantum reality, 
47-48 Subtle bodies, 166 Subtle energy 
fields, universal, 190 Subtle matter, Persian 
Sufis and, 260 Sufis, Persian, 221, 260-61, 
290 Sullivan, Robert, 248 Surgery: on 
brain, 12, 13-14, 18-19; 

placebo effect, 90-9 1 Svetasvatara 
Upanlshad, 288 Swann, Ingo, 212 Swann Is 
Way, Proust, 21-22 Swedenborg, Emanuel, 
183', 257-59, 272, 

301 Symbolism, psychic, 255 
Synchronicities, 3, 76-80, 107n, 189 
Synehronicity; The Bridge Between 

Matter and Mind, Peat, 3 

Talbot, Michael, 7, 76-78, 155-157, 160; 

and auras, 165-67, 180-81; dreams of, 

272-73n; outof-body experience of, 231; 

and poltergeists, 149-50 
Tanous, Alex, 237-38 
Tantras, 190 
Tantric mystics, 221 
Targ, Russell, 142, 206-7, 208 
Tart, Charles, 143-44, 233 
Taste, sense of, 28 
Telepathy, Bohm's views, 145 
Tenhaeff, W. H. C, 199 
Teresa of Avila, St, 111 
Theories, Bohm and, 53 
Therapeutic touch, 173 
Therapy, holotropic, 72 
Thero, E. Nandisvara Nayake, 266 
Tkirteen-F 'etaled Rose, Steinsaltz, 222 
Thomas, Lewis, 91 
Thomas of Celano, 109-10 
Thought, 220-22; and energy fields, 189; 

holographic model, 72-74; meaning 

and, 121; and neardeath experience, 

245-46 Three-dimensionality of 

15-17 Thurston, Herbert. 109, 120, 133, 

165 Tia (Indonesian shaman), 154-55 
Tibetan Book of the Dead, 240, 241, 285 
Tibetan Buddhism, 221, 287 Tiller, 
William, 158, 189 Time: holographic idea, 
200-201; and 

near-death experiences, 245; and 

out-of-body experiences, 237-38; 

travel in, 226-28 Titanic, sinking of, 21 1 
Touch, sense of, 28 Tractenberg, Michael, 
23 Transcendental experiences, 165 
Transpersonal phenomena, 70-71 Trauma, 
Trance and Transformation, 

213-14 Treatise of Auriculotherapy, 

112 Trobriand Islands, birth control, 101 
Tuberculosis, 101 Twemlow, Stuart, 231 
Two-particle experiment, 36-37, 52-53 

UFOs, 276-84, 299 Uilman, 
Montague, 61-65, 206 Ulnar loop 
fingerprints, 116-17 Umbrella 
incident, 155-57 Unconscious, 158, 
182-83, 192; 
collective, 60-61, 276; and destiny, 
216-22; placebo effects, 91; and 
UFOs, 278-79, 281, 284 Universe: 
benevolence of, 250; as 
energy field, 189; as holodeck, 159; 
holographic, 1-3, 265; and out-of-body 
experience, 234; parallel, 254; 
predetermination of, 21 1-12 

Valkhoff, Marius, 199 

Vallee, Jacques, 277-80, 282, 299 

van Heerden, Pieter, 22 

Vasiliev, Leonid, 142 

La Verite des Miracles, Montgeron, 

130-31 Veronica Giuliana, St, 110-11 
Virgin Mary, visitations by, 275-76, 299 
Virtual images, dreams as, 65-66 Vision: 
eyeless, 236-37; holographic, 

18-20, 27, 163-93 Visual centers of brain, 
18-20 Visualization: control of future, 

healing, 83, 188-89; Sufis and, 260 
Visvasara Tantra, 290 Voltaire, 131 



von Neumann, John, 2 1 
Vortices of thought, 73-74 

Wambach, Helen, 224 
Warts, placebos for, 91 
Watson, Lyall, 126-27, 138, 147-18, 

154-55 Wave patterns, interference, 
14-16 Waves, subatomic particles as, 33-34 
Weeping Madonnas, 154 Weiant, Clarence 
W„ 200 Weinreb, Herman, 1 16-17 Weiss, 
Brian L, 294 Wheeler, John, 284 White, 
John, 165 Whiteman, J. H. M., 235 Whiting, 
Christine, 238 Whitman, Walt, 82, 118 
Whitton, Joel, 213-16, 247, 250, 255, 

271,295 Wholeness, 41,48-49; Sri 
Aurobindo and, 

264-65. See also Interconnectedness 
Wholeness and the implicate Order, 

Bohra, 46 Wilbur, 
Cornelia, 99 

Wilfrid, St. 127-28 

Will power, and body functions, 102-4 

Wisdom, In dreams, 62-63 

Wissen, K. R., 135 

Wizard of the Four Winds: A 

Shaman's Story, Sharon, 289 Wolf, 
Fred Alan, 3, 65-66 Wood, Frank, 30 
Woodroffe, John, 288 "World-out-there" 
constructions, 24-25 

X-ray vision, 184-87 

Yeats, William Butler, 203 

Yoga, 262-65 

Yogananda, Pararaahansa, 152-53, 

You Can Heal Your Life, Hay, 222 
Yukteswar Giri, Sri, 262 

Zaleski, Carol, 240 Zarro, Richard 
A., 223 Zeitoun, Egypt, miracles, 
275-76 Zen Buddhism, 287-88 
Zuecarelli, Hugo, 292-93